“This will be great if we get it done. And if we don’t get it done, it’s just going to be something that we’re not going to like. And that’s OK, and I understand that very well.” — The Russian Usurper
Tiger Beat on the Potomac (thanks Charlie!) morning email thingie tells us that the Trump Train is stalled again. This is getting to be an evergreen post, just like Democrats in Disarray:
A MAJORITY, BUT FOR WHAT? — THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE DONALD TRUMP AT HIS STRONGEST. He became president in an election that shocked the political system. YET most of his legislative goals remain far off. Tax reform remains undone. They have not repealed or replaced Obamacare. Passing an infrastructure bill remains just a goal. They have not funded a massive border wall. Congress hasn’t passed a budget and is squirming to strike a deal to lay out a fiscal blueprint. One White House insider pointed to Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation as Trump’s principal legislative achievement.
If you want to read more about how the Republican Senators fleeing in terror, Politico has something for you.
Mike ‘Payola’ Allen writing the Axios morning email thingie starts with:
…which is pretty freaking funny.
The state of play:
- McConnell’s reputation for the inside game is such that Republicans assume he must have something up his sleeve. One top Republican alumnus put the bill’s chances of coming back at 15%. But then as he continued to muse, he doubled it to 30% just because of the McConnell factor.
- What Senate Republicans are thinking, via Jonathan Swan: “Rough day, but far too soon to call it a lost cause. .. [F]or all of Mitch McConnell’s widely-acknowledged legislative wizardry, he’s never had to pass healthcare before. … [I]t’s the hardest vote some of these senators will ever have to take. It’s also something that Republicans have disagreed over for 30 years, so why would they start agreeing now?”
- An administration source insists there’s a path to passage in the Senate, just as there was in the House despite the naysayers. The path as this source sees it: “some sort of deal that gives money in the short-term to the moderates in exchange for long-term reforms for the conservatives.”
- The source said the short-term money would bolster Medicaid and the response to the opioid crisis. The conservative sweeteners would include spending growth rate assurances and regulation changes.
I want to stress that this bill is far from dead and buried, and like Jason Voorhees in the Friday the 13th movies, it will pop back up when you least expect it. Keep the pressure on.