Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Trump issued a stark ultimatum to wavering House Republicans late Thursday, dispatching budget director Mick Mulvaney to tell lawmakers that if they don't get behind the AHCA, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare, will remain the "law of the land." (Photo: Getty)

Trump issued a stark ultimatum to wavering House Republicans late Thursday, dispatching budget director Mick Mulvaney to tell lawmakers that if they don't get behind the AHCA, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare, will remain the "law of the land." (Photo: Getty)

Republican Trainwreck: Millions at Risk as Trump Demands Healthcare Vote

New Congressional Budget Office analysis finds that recently unveiled cuts would be even worse economically while still threatening coverage for 24 million people by 2026

Lauren McCauley

In their frenzied effort to strong-arm support for the flailing American Health Care Act (AHCA) before a vote on Friday, President Donald Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan have officially made the Republican plan even worse.

Trump issued a stark ultimatum to wavering House Republicans late Thursday, dispatching budget director Mick Mulvaney to tell lawmakers that if they don't get behind the AHCA, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare, will remain the "law of the land."

The Hill reported:

At a dramatic closed-door House GOP conference meeting, Trump's budget director, Mick Mulvaney, delivered the message to rank-and-file Republicans: After weeks of talks, Trump is done negotiating the bill and wants a vote on Friday, according to a source in the room. 

The House had been set to vote Thursday on the American Health Care Act (AHCA), but the vote was delayed after Trump and leadership couldn’t corral the necessary 215 GOP votes. 

If the vote fails Friday, Mulvaney warned, Trump will move on to other priorities like tax reform, and ObamaCare will stay as the law of the land.

But with only 17 percent public support and a new Congressional Budget Office (CBO) analysis (pdf) finding that recently unveiled cuts would be even worse economically while still threatening coverage for 24 million people by 2026, Republicans across the political spectrum are threatening to jump ship.

Watch the House vote and debate below:

According to the CBO, the legislation would now reduce the deficit by $150 billion over 10 years, significantly less than $337 billion reduction than the previous draft. At the same time, premiums would still rise initially by 15 to 20 percent above those under Obamacare before eventually falling 10 percent by 2026.

In a last-minute gift to the ultraconservative House Freedom caucus, Ryan and Trump stripped (pdf) the AHCA of the "essential health benefits" central to Obamacare, which mandates that insurance plans include coverage for basic care, such as maternity and wellness visits.

That change, not included in the latest CBO analysis, could cause the individual insurance market to "collapse" in 2018 according to ACA expert Nicholas Bagley, a professor at the University of Michigan Law School, who described the amendment as "irresponsible, ambiguous, and destructive."

Ignoring recent polling that found that the majority of Americans support women's reproductive rights and Planned Parenthood, Trump on Friday attempted to woo the most conservative factions, tweeting:

Meanwhile, grassroots opponents of the bill continue to swarm moderate Republicans with office visits, phone calls, and protests demanding they vote against the AHCA.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

Biden-Backed Aukus Deal Could Spell 'Disaster' for Climate Cooperation With China

One U.K. lawmaker said reaching a "positive outcome" at the upcoming talks in Glasgow "just got a whole lot harder."

Jon Queally ·


Exclusive: Jared Kushner's Family Firm Set to Unleash Eviction Wave Amid Pandemic

"Kushner is the poster child for ultra-rich landlords clamoring to boost their bottom line by kicking families to the curb, even if it comes at the expense of public health."

Jake Johnson ·


Patient Group Targets Pair of Democrats for 'Selling Us Out to Drug Companies'

"It makes me so angry that members of Congress are choosing Big Pharma over patients. It's unforgivable."

Jake Johnson ·


Judge Blocks Biden From Continuing 'Inhumane' Trump Policy to Deport Families

"This is not the end of the battle against this practice," said one rights group, "but it is a major step to ensure that the U.S. welcomes these asylum-seeking families—as we should."

Jessica Corbett ·


400+ Economists Press Congress to Permanently Expand Child Tax Credit

Such an expansion would "dramatically reduce childhood poverty in the United States," they said.

Andrea Germanos ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo