President Donald Trump predicted Wednesday that Senate Republicans are “going to get at least very close” to passing legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare, adding that “I think we’re going to get it over the line.”
Trump’s comments, which came Wednesday at a roundtable discussion on energy with state, local and tribal leaders at the White House, followed a meeting Tuesday afternoon with Republican senators just hours after GOP leadership postponed a vote on repeal-and-replace measure until after the July 4 recess.
The vote’s postponement came after the repeal-and-replace legislation had failed to gain traction among the Senate GOP rank and file. At least eight Republican senators have expressed opposition to the measure, and with a 52-seat majority, the party can afford to lose just two GOP votes and still pass the bill.
“The meeting went really well. We’re talking about a great, great form of health care,” Trump said in introductory remarks that were captured by the White House press pool. “We have a plan, that if we get it approved — it’s very tough, every state is different, every senator is different. But I have to tell you, the Republican senators had a really impressive meeting yesterday at the White House. We had close to 50 of them. We have 52, we need almost all of them. That’s never easy.”
“I think we’re going to get at least very close, and I think we’re going to get it over the line. There was a great, great feeling in that room yesterday,” he continued.
The bill, Trump said, would make healthcare cheaper not just for individuals but for the country as well. He said Obamacare is “dying” and has been a “headache for everybody” and a “nightmare for many.” With the Senate’s legislation, the president said, “we get rid of so much… all of the bad parts of Obamacare are gone.”
By postponing the vote, Trump said, Republicans “have given ourselves a little bit more time to make it perfect.”
Asked by a reporter if he was concerned about the Medicaid cuts in the repeal-and-replace legislation, Trump said only that “this will be great for everybody.”