Trump rages after humiliating health care defeat
The GOP's seven-year crusade to repeal Obamacare died early Friday morning. Trump is not taking it well.
After suffering a stunning, early morning health care defeat on the Senate floor, Donald Trump took to Twitter to lash out.
Taking aim at the three Republicans and 48 Democrats who saved health insurance for millions, Trump said they “let the American people down” by refusing to support the GOP’s last-ditch effort to repeal Obamacare.
He also quickly returned to threatening to sabotage the American health care system, openly hoping it will implode and leave millions without coverage.
3 Republicans and 48 Democrats let the American people down. As I said from the beginning, let ObamaCare implode, then deal. Watch!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 28, 2017
Three GOP lawmakers — Sens. John McCain of Arizona, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Susan Collins of Maine — broke from the Republican majority in joining the 48 Democratic senators in sinking the bill.
The defeat was just the final in a long list of procedural health care defeats this week as the GOP and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scrambled to pass anything in the name of repealing Obamacare, even the so-called, skeletal “skinny repeal,” which was voted down early Friday morning.
The GOP has railed against the Obamacare law for seven years and made repealing it the centerpiece of four straight election cycles. But Republicans had no actual plan that would replace Obamacare, which over the years has become more and more popular with American voters.
Instead, Republicans this year contorted all Congressional rules while refusing to hold any public hearing to ram through a wildly unpopular bill that was certain the leave millions of Americans without coverage.
In the end, it was John McCain who cast the deciding vote as his “no” produced audible gasps in the Senate gallery. The same John McCain who was recently diagnosed with brain cancer, and the same John McCain Trump mocked two years ago this month for having been captured during the Vietnam War.
The loss was also a stinging rebuke for Vice President Mike Pence, who represented the potential tie-breaking vote. He spent 20 minutes in plain view on the Senate floor pleading and cajoling with McCain as Republicans held the final vote open for more than an hour.
“Twice during the conversation, a Pence aide came to whisper in the vice president’s ear — other reporters learned it was the White House calling,” the Washington Post reported. “Pence finally left to take a call, but later returned to speak with McCain.” Trump himself spoke directly to McCain, hoping to change his mind.
But Trump failed. Pence failed. And the American people won.
Humiliated, Trump had only Twitter to turn to for comfort.