The Wall Street Journal is reporting that President Trump’s final position on Swampcare is that if Republicans don’t pass it, he’s fine with keeping Obamacare.
This isn’t dealmaking, it’s arrogant absurdity. After two years of telling everyone how Obamacare is a disaster, Trump would rather live with the disaster and blame conservatives than negotiate changes that will amount to a full repeal and replace.
Either Trump was never serious about getting rid of Obamacare, he’s not serious about this threat, or he simply could care less about millions of Americans forced to pay 20+ percent premium increases year after year. The definition of a person who does this is “jerk.” There are worse words for it, that I won’t use here.
If I were angry, I’d write something like this:
“What does a billionaire care about families who can’t afford $1400 a month premiums so they don’t buy health insurance? What does a political dilettante care about conservative principles he never bothered to learn or support?”
But I’m not angry. I’m recognizing that the voters elected this man, fully knowing how he is. This is Trump’s arrogant and self-aggrandizing way of telling the GOP, “it’s my way or the highway, buddy!” If they don’t like the AHCA as written–crafted to appease moderate Republicans, with a few tweaks to make it look like it’s repealing Obamacare (but it isn’t), then he will blame them for keeping the original.
The Democrats will crow about it for years and many Republicans in Congress will have to answer to angry crowds at home, with no support from the president.
If ACHA passes, and becomes a millstone around Republicans in 2018, Trump will simply point to Congress and say “it was their bill.” He’ll call it Ryancare. The arrogance of Trump is just as bad as the arrogance of former President Obama. Neither of them can accept blame for anything, in any way.
If Congress had any backbone, at the hint of this kind of reckless abandon, they should all vote to kill Swampcare and start over. Two branches of government can play Trump’s game. If Trump wants his corporate tax cuts, tariff changes, and his blessed Wall, he will have to get the money and authorization from Congress.
Kill Swampcare and let Trump make the next move. If he takes his ball and goes home, let him be the one to veto the next bill, maybe a repeat of the 2015 AHCRA that actually would have repealed and replaced Obamacare.
We should not accept this unbridled arrogance. Letting Trump play power games in a presidential takeover of the legislative branch is bad government. Nobody ever said Trump would give us good government, but Congress doesn’t have to bow in obsequious acceptance and say “thank you sir, may I have another?”