President Donald Trump stunned everyone - Republicans and Democrats alike - when he announced that he'd be replacing the Affordable Care Act with one being developed by Republicans. Now he's saying he never wanted Congress to vote on the issue until after the 2020 election.
The Republican party has long been pushing to repeal Obamacare, but Trump abruptly upped the ante last week, when he asked a federal court judge to invalidate the ACA and promised a Republican replacement.
The problem? No replacement is in the works. And now the president is backtracking, claiming that putting it to vote after the 2020 election was his idea all along.
"I never asked Mitch McConnell for a vote before the Election as has been incorrectly reported (as usual) in the @nytimes," Trump Tweeted, "but only after the Election when we take back the House etc. Republicans will always support pre-existing conditions!"
...This will be a great campaign issue. I never asked Mitch McConnell for a vote before the Election as has been in… https://t.co/MZYJVV86HJ— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1554298634.0
The New York Times wasn't having it. "We stand by our reporting."
@realDonaldTrump @nytimes We stand by our reporting: https://t.co/DI9h7d9x1m President Trump's own budget includes… https://t.co/Csv6s0Sa2f— NYTimes Communications (@NYTimes Communications)1554302282.0
White House Correspondent for the New York Times and one of the article's authors, Maggie Haberman, also stood her ground against Trump.
We quoted McConnell. https://t.co/s22PRME3W1— Maggie Haberman (@Maggie Haberman)1554299168.0
Trump's sudden change of heart came after a strong backlash from GOP leaders, including Senator Mitch McConnell, who told the president that pushing for an immediate overhaul of the health care system wasn't in the works. "I made it clear to him that we were not going to be doing that in the Senate," said McConnell.
But Trump's version is different: "I wanted to delay it myself. I want to put it after the election."
@NYTimesPR @gtconway3d @realDonaldTrump @nytimes 🙈 https://t.co/0eazjW9Mlb— Rhona Applebaum (@Rhona Applebaum)1554310359.0
@jaketapper @kaitlancollins @TheLeadCNN Seems like Trump wants to make it a 2020 campaign issue....which seems a po… https://t.co/hav2gY1FE6— Wolverine Filled Moat Enthusiast (@Wolverine Filled Moat Enthusiast)1554243351.0
Trump retreats on health care as 2020 issue @kaitlancollins reports @TheLeadCNN https://t.co/gO1vrIABJi https://t.co/IAwZkCnQaD— Jake Tapper (@Jake Tapper)1554243224.0
"The Republican Party will be known as the Party of Great HealthCare," Trump tweeted on Monday.
"They’re trying to take away health-care coverage from tens of millions of people, to take away protections for people who have preexisting conditions," said Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).
Repealing Obamacare would leave over 20 million Americans without access to health insurance.
If President Trump has his way in court: ❌ People with pre-existing conditions will lose their health care ❌ People… https://t.co/05miIQLA5l— Senator Patty Murray (@Senator Patty Murray)1554312240.0
@maggieNYT Except he *was* blocked. The phrase you're looking for is "face-saving," Mags. Just a token gesture t… https://t.co/hhmOJLnpsh— Gary M. Sarli♿️ (@Gary M. Sarli♿️)1554262050.0
Trump in 2016: Repeal and replace! Trump in 2018: Repeal and…maybe replace? Trump in 2019: Repeal now, re-elect,… https://t.co/0cKzeq943a— Adam Schiff (@Adam Schiff)1554235831.0
Trump can backtrack all he wants, but the internet has a long memory.