House Speaker Paul Ryan on Thursday suggested he was wary of a bipartisan approach to healthcare.
In an interview with CBS “This Morning,”Ryan said he was concerned that if the House Republican conference didn’t get a healthcare bill passed, President Donald Trump would move on and work with Democrats.
“What I worry about Norah is that if we don’t do this, then he’ll just go work with Democrats to try and change Obamacare, and that’s hardly a conservative thing,” Ryan told CBS.
“This is a can-do president, who’s a business guy, and he wants to get things done. I know he wants to get things done with the Republican Congress, but if this Republican Congress allows the perfect to be the enemy of the good, I worry we’ll push the president into working with the Democrats. He’s been suggesting that as much.”
Ryan also told reporter Norah O’Donnell that he and Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi “see things very differently” and that he has not reached out to get bipartisan support for the American Health Care Act, the legislation Ryan pulled from what looked to be a failed floor vote last week.
Trump told reporters Friday after the defeat of the AHCA that the bill did not have any Democratic support. Since, he has suggested that going forward, a bipartisan approach may be the best way to get a healthcare plan through Congress.
Ryan also told CBS that despite the initial failure of the AHCA, Republicans still want to repeal and replace Obamacare.
“About 90% of our members are for this bill, and we’re not going to give up after seven years of dealing with this, after running on a plan all of last year, translating that plan into legislation, which is what this is,” Ryan said.
The AHCA was introduced earlier this month, and the GOP had no cohesive plan to replace Obamacare previously, though Ryan, Trump, and numerous other Republicans had put forth rough proposals.
The AHCA ran into intraparty division among GOP House members, as conservative lawmakers in the House Freedom Caucus felt the bill did not go far enough, while moderate Republicans balked at the changes to Medicaid funding and the possibility of large insurance coverage losses for Americans.
Ryan said the leadership is still focused on addressing those issues, with input from the Republican conference.
“We’re listening to people and if we can make improvements to this bill, all the better,” Ryan said. “If improvements can be made to this legislation that get people to yes, that’s great.”
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