WASHINGTON (AP/KXAN) — The Associated Press is reporting that House GOP leaders are delaying a vote on the health care repeal bill, in a major setback for President Donald Trump and Speaker Paul Ryan.
Earlier in the day, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said President Trump’s meeting with the House Freedom Caucus was a “positive step” toward achieving the GOP’s goal of driving down costs and increasing access to health care.
Freedom caucus members told reporters on Capitol Hill that there was “no deal” following the meeting. Two dozen or so members of the group said the legislation being pushed by GOP leaders doesn’t go far enough to repeal “Obamacare.”
Without a deal with the Freedom Caucus, and with moderate-leaning members defecting, it seems unlikely GOP leaders will have the votes they need to go forward with a vote later Thursday as they had planned.
Thursday also marks the seventh anniversary of President Barack Obama’s landmark health care law. In a statement, Obama said, “America is stronger because of the Affordable Care Act.” Obama did not directly address GOP efforts to repeal his law. The former president does say that if Republicans are serious about lowering costs and expanding coverage, and are prepared to work with Democrats, “That’s something we all should welcome.”
According to NBC News, there are 30 Republicans who say they will not vote for the Trump-backed legislation.