Fact check: Trump overlooks his Obamacare promise

The bill, backed by Trump, has proved a tough sell to both conservative and moderate factions in his own Republican party.

The President and Republican leaders agreed to pull the vote on Friday after it became apparent it would not get enough votes. "I think we have to let Obamcare go its way for a little while ..."

With health care apparently behind them, Republicans appear poised to pursue other parts of their legislative agenda, including border security, rebuilding the military, controlling the deficit and tax reform. It was an epic, damaging, self-inflicted collapse that smothered the GOP effort.

"We'll be going right now for tax reform, which we could have done earlier, but this really would have worked out better if we could have had some Democrat support", said Mr Trump to reporters in the Oval Office. "I don't know how long it's going to take us to repeal this law".

"It'll remain law of the land until it's replaced", he said.

The Wisconsin Republican said he had directly informed Trump that he did not have the votes, and that the President accepted his recommendation that Republicans yank the bill.

"There is a block of no votes that we had, that is why this didn't pass", he said, after one reporter asked him if he blamed the conservative House Freedom Caucus for obstructing the bill.

Ryan reportedly kept telling Trump everything would be fine and "they'd bring it together at the end". "We're back to the drawing board".

True to that spirit, it was the first major piece of legislation he tried to get Congress to pass.

Every time Paul Ryan, Republican leader in the House of Representatives, relaxed a regulation to placate the hardline Freedom Caucus and win a vote in the House, he risked losing a vote in the Senate, where members tend to be more mainstream. There was also opposition from doctors, hospitals, consumer groups and AARP.

One problem facing the GOP is repercussions from the party's voters.

The Obama law was approved in 2010 with no Republican votes.

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called it "a victory for all Americans".

Obama's statute has spread coverage to 20 million people and required insurers to cover numerous services and barred them from refusing policies to the very sick.

Trump says he would be willing to reopen negotiations for a health care bill with Democrats if the Affordable Care Act fails.

Despite reports of backbiting from administration officials toward Ryan, Trump said: "I like Speaker Ryan".

Among them was Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who has spoken repeatedly about how unraveling Obama's law was a top priority for his chamber.

That promise stands at odds with his statement that "I never said repeal it and replace it within 64 days". "I will not sugarcoat this: This is a disappointing day for us".

Two chief House authors expressed no taste for diving back into the issue.

"Sometimes you're playing Fantasy Football and sometimes you're in the real game", Barton said, according to Talking Points Memo. "Do not worry!" the Republican said on Twitter.

On the economic side, it involves refashioning how providers, patients and federal programs should interact.

Finally, just before the time to vote rolled around, Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan jumped in to withdraw the bill and avoid it being shot down.

Ironically, the outcome hewed more closely to a prediction by Ryan's predecessor, former Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio. "So if we couldn't pass a 2017 budget and this happens today, how are we going to pass a 2018 budget?" he said.

  • Phil Peters