House Majority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy told CNN that House debate on the bill will start Friday morning. But a White House spokeswoman said debate will begin on Thursday night and Republicans expect to have the votes to pass it on Friday.
The postponement is a sobering setback for Republicans, who aimed to approve health-care legislation before moving to other parts of their agenda, particularly tax reform. The GOP had timed Thursday’s now-aborted vote to the seventh anniversary of the passage of the ACA, popularly known as Obamacare.
President met with the House Freedom Caucus for two straight days, aiming to convince the conservative group to vote to pass the plan. Members of the caucus have opposed the current replacement proposal, saying it does not go far enough to repeal Obamacare.
A Freedom Caucus source told CNBC there is “no way” a bill will pass on Friday.
The White House gave the House Freedom Caucus what one lawmaker called a “final offer” Thursday in its effort to win enough votes for the legislation. After the delay, Freedom Caucus Chairman Rep. Mark Meadows told reporters “We have not gotten enough of our members to get to ‘yes'” but added that “progress is being made.”
“I am still a ‘no’ at this time, I’m desperately trying to get to ‘yes’ … with all of the Freedom Caucus, they’re really trying to get to ‘yes,'” the North Carolina Republican said. He added that he expects the GOP needs “another 30 or 40 votes” to pass the bill.
The latest spin from the White House is the delay is nothing more than a scheduling change so reporters don’t have to meet at 3:00 Friday for the vote.
A scheduling change? Really? When you are 30 to 40 votes short? This was all too predictable.
The “vote will get crushed” item was up to the individual to decide, but 30 votes short would qualify in my estimation.
Only six readers opted for that result. And that makes sense.
In retrospect, It was really a choice between “The vote will barely pass” and “The vote won’t happen”.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock