Trump Saw Defeat Of Obamacare Repeal Bill Coming

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Alex Pfeiffer White House Correspondent
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President Donald Trump essentially knew the Graham-Cassidy bill was doomed when he started his day Monday.

“Looks like [Maine Sen. Susan Collins] and some others will vote against,” Trump said in an interview Monday morning on an Alabama radio program. “So we’re going to lose two or three votes, and that’s the end of that.”

Sen. Collins joined Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul and Arizona Sen. John McCain Monday afternoon in announcing that she would not support the Graham-Cassidy health care reform bill. The Republicans hold a 52 seat majority can’t afford to lose three votes. Collins’ announcement likely killed what was effectively a last-ditch effort to repeal Obamacare.

The bill would’ve repealed Obamacare’s individual and employer insurance mandates and started a block grant program for states in 2020.

“When I ran, I was told I’d have a bill on my desk. I’d sign it day one,” Trump said Monday on the radio show. Republicans voted to repeal Obamacare dozens of times under President Obama, and Trump said, “Now when it matters because you have a president who’s actually going to sign it, they don’t do it.”

Under current Senate rules, Senate Republicans would need 60 votes to repeal Obamacare starting on Oct. 1.