President Trump made yet another effort to urge the passage of a bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, one day before the Senate is slated to vote on a measure.
Flanked by parents and children who the administration claimed were “victims” of Obamacare, Trump repeatedly lambasted the law, calling it “a nightmare”
“We are here to solve problems for the people. Obamacare has broken our health care system. Its broken. Its collapsed. Its gone,” Trump said in a televised statement from the White House.
At one point, Trump incorrectly stated the number of years since Obamacare became been law, claiming it had “wreaked havoc” on Americans for 17 years. Former President Barack Obama signed the bill into law in 2010, seven years ago.
Trump said Republican Senators must keep their promise to constituents to repeal and replace the law. “The American people have waited long enough,” said Trump. “There’s been enough talk and no action. Now is the time for action.”
But polling doesn’t match the President’s rhetoric on the Affordable Care Act. According to a poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation released June 23, 50% of Americans think they will be better off if Obamacare remains in place, as opposed to 36% who think they will be better off under a GOP-proposed alternative. In April, a Gallup poll found that the law had surpassed 50% in popularity for the first time since it was passed.
Its also unclear how close the Senate actually is to passing a measure, and what it would ultimately be. With 52 Republicans in the Senate, the party can only afford two defections if it wants to proceed with the debate. At least nine Senators opposed the original version of the bill, which leadership released on June 22. At least four Senator opposed the revised version released on July 13, leading Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to conclude that “the effort to repeal and immediately replace Obamacare will not be successful.”
Instead, McConnell proposed that the Senate proceed to debate but take up a measure to repeal Obamacare without a replacement, which has already faced opposition from three Senators. McConnell plans to call a vote on the next steps of an Obamacare repeal measure on Tuesday.