Friday, April 28, 2017

Will Ryan Make His Members Walk The Plank For TrumpCare 3.0 Today? Tomorrow?


Since the Congressional Budget Office announced that they're nowhere near scoring TrumpCare 3.0-- and won't even have it for next week either-- Ryan could surprise everyone today and announce an instant vote. I think if the House Republicans have the votes to pass it-- regardless of how flat on its face it would fall in the Senate-- Ryan and McCarthy could actually succumb to Trump Regime pressure and call for the vote in a few hours. But I doubt it. First off, it looks like for every Freedom Caucus crackpot they gained by eliminating the popular preexisting condition coverage requirement, they lost a more mainstream conservative. (Late last night McCarthy's office said they still didn't have enough votes to pass this pig.)

Mike Coffman, (R-CO) represents a suburban Denver district that was won by Obama over Romney 51.6% to 46.5% and then by Hillary over Trumpanzee 50.2% to 41.3%. He says if Ryan calls the vote today-- before he's finished analyzing it-- he'd vote NO. Very tough district. Adam Kinzinger, represents an Illinois district Trump one substantially but he's shifted from a YES on the original TrumpCare to a "maybe" on this version. Staten Island's Dan Donovan is in a swingy district which is the only district in NYC that went for Trump (53.6% to 43.8%)-- after going for Obama in 2012. He says he was a NO on TrumpCare 1.0 and 2.0 and says 3.0 has made him even more certain he's voting NO. Majority Whip Steve Scalise says he's given up on Donovan. The Ohio GOP-held district which Trump did worst-- OH-10-- is represented by Mike Turner. Yesterday he said he was against the first version and that there's nothing in the new version that's moving him to change his mind.

Texas wing nut Pete Sessions has been counted on to support every far right crackpot scheme that's ever come down the pike-- until now. Hillary won-- shockingly-- his suburban district north of Dallas 48.5% to 46.6%, enough to scare the crap out of Sessions. Yesterday he was quoted saying that he sees "no net advantage" in votes for AHCA with the MacArthur/Meadows changes. "I don't see any impact by it." Other announced NO votes include Mark Amodei (NV), Andy Biggs (AZ), Barbara Comstock (VA), Jeff Denham (CA), Charlie Dent (PA), Brian Fitzpatrick (PA), Walter Jones (NC), John Katko (NY), Leonard Lance (NJ), Frank LoBiondo (NJ), Thomas Massie (KY), Patrick Meehan (PA), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL), Chris Smith (NJ), Daniel Webster (FL), David Young (IA). Many more are hiding under their desks and refusing ti take a position-- praying that Ryan doesn't make them vote. In that category we have Darrell Issa (CA), John Culberson (TX), Steve Knight (CA), Will Hurd (TX), John Faso (NY), Paul Cook (CA), Dana Rohrabacher (CA), Pete King (NY), Elise Stefanik (NY), Don Young (AK), David Valadao (CA), Ed Royce (CA), Rod Blum (IA), David Joyce (OH), Bruce Poliquin (ME), and Fred Upton (MI).

James Hohmann, writing for the Washington Post reports that the Regime (Bannon) is trying to pressure Ryan with the threat that if repeal collapses, he's getting the blame. "The pressure," he wrote, "is suddenly on the Speaker, not the president, to convince potentially vulnerable members to walk the plank for an unpopular bill that’s still going to be dead on arrival in the Senate. Such a vote which could also cost some their seats next November. It will be the guys in the Tuesday Group, not the Freedom Caucus, who get swept out in a 2018 wave because they tend to come from more purple districts. Many are balking, but still undecided, about the revised proposal. A lot of Ryan allies are exasperated by the Trump push to rush a vote before the week is over. There are even rumors of scheduling one for Saturday-- to coincide with Trump’s 100th day. (This seems unlikely.) But it was a similar fixation on optics over substance that prompted Trump to demand a now-or-never repeal vote last month that would coincide with the seventh anniversary of the Affordable Care Act being signed into law. This is part of an emerging pattern. Trump has repeatedly set up the Speaker to be the fall guy by making unrealistic demands and sticking with infeasible promises. Once again, the burden is falling on Ryan to either make them happen or explain why they didn’t."

Last night another Ryan ally, Ryan Costello, whose Philly suburban district went for Hillary over Trump, announced he's a NO on TrumpCare. The House Leadership can only afford to lose 22 votes-- unless they can lure some shit-eating Blue Dog like Sinema, Lipinski or Peterson-- and Costello brought the count to 19-- with over 50 members on the fence. "On the fence" means they don't want to vote for it. Everybody wants to know which Republican was overheard telling a staffer "If I vote for this healthcare bill, it will be the end of my career." Could be any of a couple dozen.

Orange County Congresswoman Mimi Walters tries to pass herself off as vaguely mainstream. Her district is but she isn't. In November Hillary beat Trump pretty substantially, 49.8% to 44.4%. Trump did more than ten points worse than Romney had! That district is a major target for 2018 and one of the top prospects, consumer advocate Katie Porter, a colleague of Elizabeth Warren's, noticed that the L.A> Times was reporting that Walters, who backed the first versions, is now backing the now and far worse version 3.0-- the hell with pre-existing conditions. Porter: "This is indefensible. OC residents' health shouldn't be used as a political bargaining chit, but that's exactly what Donald Trump and Congresswoman Mimi Walters are doing in Washington." She has reminded voters that that Walters already voted for TrumpCare 1.0 as a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee despite the fact that the CBO estimated that bill would cause 24 million Americans to lose health care coverage, including tens of thousands of her own constituents.

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