US House Speaker Ryan understands Trump's frustration on health bill

Posted March 31, 2017

Karl Rove agreed this morning that the conservative House Freedom Caucus did a "grave disservice" to the Republican agenda with its opposition to the health care bill, but advised President Donald Trump not to "punch down" at the lawmakers.

On Thursday morning, President Donald Trump drew a line and put himself and the Establishment on one side, and the fiscal conservatives and libertarians of the Freedom Caucus on the other.

Later Thursday, the President called out individual Freedom Caucus members in several tweets.

"Where are @RepMarkMeadows, @Jim_Jordan and @Raul_Labrador?"

House minority leader Nancy Pelosi tweeted that Trump's healthcare plans would only bring "devastation" upon American families.

Trump initially blamed Democrats for the health care bill's failure.

As Reason's Matt Welch notes of the Freedom Caucus, "They were draining the swamp even before Donald Trump was getting into the birth-certificate forensics business".

"Rove argued that Trump is wrong to be lashing out at members of the conservative group following the collapse of the bill last week to repeal and replace ObamaCare".

The New York Times reported Thursday that Trump's chief strategist Stephen Bannon and staff "have been closely monitoring the president's posts and using them as leverage in negotiations".

Deputy White House Chief of Staff Loyal to Priebus Leaving
Priebus and other White House officials stressed that Walsh was the one who made a decision to leave the administration. Katie Walsh, the Deputy Chief of Staff in Donald Trump's White House, has left the administration just nine weeks in.

Trump's message wasn't subtle - nor was it random. "I share (the) frustration". Ryan's comment drew sharp criticism Republican Sen.

The idea that Trump could turn away from his own party at this stage is, to a degree, theater created to spook the far-right of the party into line.

Ryan also said that he anxious that the defiant Republicans would push Trump "into working with Democrats" on health care, a result that he believed would not lead to a bill adherent to conservative principles.

He also asked Teller and other administration officials present to more rapidly approve bottled-up Freedom of Information requests about Russian Federation and other topics - likening the foot-dragging on legally mandated disclosure to what he said was the Obama administration's flouting of immigration laws. "But the fact is you've got to look at the legislation, and it doesn't do what we told the voters we would do".

Trump initially blamed Democrats for not supporting the new bill.

The next day he wrote the Freedom Caucus "was able to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory".

He said that he may very well have to battle both the Democratic Party as well as members of the conservative group during the midterm elections in order to assure his administration's agenda wins approved.

"I'm going to let the tweet for itself", White House spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters. "No shame, Mr. President. Nearly everyone succumbs to the DC Establishment". Meadows was an early Trump supporter during the campaign, and the two talked frequently. I seriously doubt it. Freedom Caucus members already represent conservative districts, so the idea of a mainstream primary challenge probably doesn't sound too intimidating. Plus, rewriting the bill to woo Freedom Caucus members led more Republican moderates to jump ship.

"I don't want that to happen", he said. "The Freedom Caucus didn't care".

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