President Donald Trump delivered a statement on health care shortly after 3:00 p.m. ET today from the White House Blue Room. The speech, which came as he has grown increasingly frustrated by Senate Republicans’ inability to get their health care bill passed, can be seen below.
Before Trump’s speech at the White House, he met with “victims of Obamacare” in the State Dining Room. They stood behind him as he delivered his speech, which was a stern warning to Senate Republicans who are expected to vote on health care this week. He also accidentally said that the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, was passed 17 years ago. However, it was only passed in 2010 and didn’t go into effect until 2014.
During the speech, Trump told Republican Senators that there is “still time to do the right thing” and “keep their promise” to repeal and replace Obamacare. He also repeatedly said that “Obamacare is death,” adding that, “The question for every senator now is whether they will side with Obamacare’s architects, or with its forgotten victims.”
The president also offered a Democrats a chance to make up fro the “terrible harm they’ve inflicted on Americans,” although he also called them obstructionists.
Over the weekend, Trump took to Twitter to complain about Senate Republicans. In one tweet, the President wrote that some Republicans do “very little to protect their President.” A few hours later on Sunday, Trump added, “If Republicans don’t Repeal and Replace the disastrous ObamaCare, the repercussions will be far greater than any of them understand!”
Although Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has seen this first two plans to pass a healthcare bill fail before even reaching a vote, he still hopes to have a vote early this week, a spokesman told the Washington Post.
McConnell couldn’t get the votes he needed for the first bill, so he toyed with the idea of voting on a bill that simply repealed the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. That idea didn’t work either, so he’s going to take the House’s American Health Care Act to the Senate, and Senators will get to propose changes to it.
“It appears that we will have a vote on Tuesday. But we don’t know whether we’re going to be voting on the House bill, the first version of the Senate bill, the second version of the Senate bill, a new version of the Senate bill, or a 2015 bill that would have repealed the Affordable Care Act now and then said that somehow we’ll figure out a replacement over the next two years,” Maine Senator Susan Collins, a Republican who has been critical of the entire process, told Face The Nation.
As for Trump, he has been using Twitter to egg on Senate Republicans. “The Republican Senators must step up to the plate and, after 7 years, vote to Repeal and Replace. Next, Tax Reform and Infrastructure. WIN,” he Wrote on Sunday. “ObamaCare is dead and the Democrats are obstructionists, no ideas or votes, only obstruction. It is solely up to the 52 Republican Senators!”