A brief history of Trump's Obamacare negotiating strategies
Lazaro Gamio / Axios
President Trump has tried a lot of different strategies to get Congress to repeal and replace Obamacare — everything from letting Congress write the bill to taking over the negotiations, walking away, walking back, scolding the Freedom Caucus, threatening to cut a deal with Democrats instead, and threatening not to pay insurers unless Democrats cut a deal.
Why it matters: The one thing the strategies have in common — at least for now — is that they haven't worked.
Here's what Trump has tried so far:
- In January, said he would propose an Obamacare replacement bill as soon as Tom Price was confirmed as Health and Human Services secretary.
- Instead, he let the House write it. House bill was introduced in March.
- Said health care had to be done before tax reform.
- Negotiated changes with conservative Republicans.
- Demanded a House vote to pressure the remaining Republican holdouts.
- Pulled the plug when House Speaker Paul Ryan told him the vote would fail. (Trump and Ryan each said it was their idea.)
- Said he was moving on to tax reform and would wait for Democrats to come to the negotiating table.
- Tweeted that "Obamacare will explode."
- Trolled Freedom Caucus members on Twitter, saying "we must fight them" and Democrats.
- Told the Financial Times he'll get a health care deal "one way or another," either with the Freedom Caucus or with the Democrats.
- Sent Vice President Mike Pence to the Hill to offer the Freedom Caucus a new deal: state waivers from some of Obamacare's insurance regulations. (Moderates rebelled.)
- Told the New York Times he might link the health care bill to a popular infrastructure bill to help win votes.
- Pushed Ryan for signs of progress before the House left for recess. The House Rules Committee met to approve a new amendment, even though the House wasn't about to vote on anything.
- Said he wants to pass health care before tax reform again.
- Threatened to withhold Obamacare cost-sharing payments from insurers until Democrats agree to negotiate.