President Trump is facing the first crucial test of his presidency — repealing and replacing Obamacare — and he needs to apply the negotiating chops and deal-making skills he bragged about in his bestselling book, “The Art of the Deal,” to fixing our broken health-care system.
And given his low approval ratings, he needs a win.
Dealing with the Obamacare mess has been the core focus of the Republican party for the past 7 years — not to mention a major campaign promise that helped propel Donald Trump to the White House. So it’s imperative that the president seal the deal and obtain the 216 House votes needed tomorrow to move the GOP replacement plan — unoffically dubbed “Ryancare” or “Trumpcare” — to the Senate floor.
Given that health care is a pocketbook issue directly impacting voters — and it’s one-sixth of the U.S. economy — the stakes are extremely high for Trump and the Republicans to get this done right, and not ram through a clunker like Democrats did the first time around.
Otherwise, Republicans will see their hard-won control of the House and Senate disappear in the next midterm elections. Something Trump reportedly warned members of the Freedom Caucus about yesterday.
“I honestly think many of you will lose your seats in 2018 if you don’t get this done,” Trump told opponents of his health-care bill at a meeting to garner votes among caucus members.
And he’s right.
Republicans have railed against Obamacare for years, citing how costly it is not to mention its adverse effects to jobs, calling the Democrats’ socialized medical plan the No. 1 job-killing policy in America. They were even instrumental in temporarily shutting the government down over Obamacare. But if the GOP now hastily pushes through a replacement plan that continues to see premiums rise for Americans, while protecting insurers versus voters’ wallets, Trump could be voted out of office too — along with his GOP colleagues.
It’s imperative that Trump doesn’t just notch a PR win with his replacement bill. He has to get it done right.
Protecting middle-class families wallets by keeping health-care costs down must remain his top priority.
If not, Democrats will have the last laugh come 2018.