Brat: Political Pressure on AHCA Is Overwhelming

Both the White House and the House Republican leadership have ratcheted up the pressure on reluctant conservatives, lobbying them to support the American Health Care Act before today’s crucial vote.

“The political pressure is overwhelming,” said Rep. Dave Brat (R-Va.), who earlier in the week told LifeZette he is a “no” vote.

Speaking on “The Laura Ingraham Show” Thursday, Brat said the Trump administration and the whip offices of House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) are beating the bushes with gusto to round up the votes they need to pass the AHCA. It’s the first Republican attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare.

Brat said Trump and Ryan surrogates in the House are bringing “pressure like crazy.”

The bill is not popular with the House Freedom Caucus, a conservative group of about 40 House members. President Donald Trump was scheduled to meet with House Freedom Caucus members at the White House late Thursday morning.

Brat said Trump and Ryan’s surrogates in the House are bringing “pressure like crazy.”

Brat said for the first time since Obamacare was passed in 2010, Republicans have an opportunity to repeal Obamacare, which is loathed by the Republican base. And since Jan. 20, congressional Republicans have had a White House ready to help in that effort.

But Brat said he wants to make sure Trump is not harmed by a bad repeal bill.

“We didn’t have the cooperation three months ago,” said Brat. “We don’t want Trump caught in a death spiral.”

Related: The Scrambled Politics of the Health Care Debate

The president is telling the GOP caucus that they face a “binary” choice: this or nothing.

There are signs Trump has turned quite a few conservatives toward approving the AHCA, which would then move to the Senate for more massaging. The bill needs 215 votes to pass the House.

“We’re still open for negotiations,” Rep. Ted Yoho, a House Freedom Caucus member, told CNN. “There is still time.”

Last Modified: March 23, 2017, 11:51 am

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