Donald Trump’s Healthcare Disaster was Unavoidable
The doomed American Health Care Act of 2017 has been the most painful political disappointment suffered by United States President Donald Trump since his controversial election shocked the world in November 2016. Although the Trump administration has already experienced considerable setbacks, this recent failure to repeal the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, is a profound defeat.
As many political analysts expected, “Trumpcare” did not get very far. On Friday, March 26th, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer was holding a press conference that suggested the Republican healthcare plan was on its way to Congress for the final vote. While Spicer was busy answering hard questions about the unpopular piece of legislation, President Trump and Republican Senator Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House of Representatives, were in the Oval Office discussing the fate of the bill. Senator Ryan told the President that the best course of action was to abandon the legislative proposal completely for the purpose of avoiding what would have been an embarrassment for the White House and the Grand Old Party.
Naturally, the President tried to put a positive spin on the matter by blaming Democrats for the failed bill, even though the strongest opposition came from his own party.
Trumpcare: What Went Wrong
The plan to repeal Obamacare was flawed from the start and there was little that Trump could have done to avoid disaster. The main problem is that Trumpcare seemed to have been crafted solely for the purpose of enacting political demagoguery. Repealing Obamacare became an obsession of Senator Ryan, President Trump and a few other Republicans, and there really wasn’t much of a reason for doing so other than to undo something that President Obama had accomplished.
Opposition to Trumpcare was formidable. Think tanks, grassroots activists and medical professionals firmly opposed the bill, which would have resulted in leaving 24 million American without health insurance over the next 10 years. There was also the issue of conservative Republicans not willing to support the bill; even though they are not fans of Obamacare, they preferred leaving it in place than passing legislation that did not make too much sense.
Trump did not provide much input in crafting the bill; Senator Ryan and a handful of Republicans chose a healthcare plan strategy that had previously failed in the State of Washington. Trump played the part of deal maker as he attempted to win over Republican Members of Congress. According to a news report published by British newspaper The Guardian, the President tried everything from making concessions to inviting lawmakers to the White House for bowling sessions.
For the time being, Trump will have to make do with Obamacare in place; there are no immediate plans to go back to the drawing board. In the event Trumpcare would have been enacted, the President may have been worse off because the plan was a mess to begin with and would have made him and the GOP very unpopular.