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Obamacare: Trump tweets repeal now, replace later

Senate Republicans had given themselves an unrealistic deadline of coming up with a bill reconciling the demands of their conservative and moderate members by Friday.

world Updated: Jul 01, 2017 21:50 IST
HT Correspondent
Donald Trump in the Rose Garden after meetings at the White House.
Donald Trump in the Rose Garden after meetings at the White House.(Reuters)

With US senate Republicans unable to agree on a bill to repeal and replace the 2010 Affordable Care Act, Donald Trump on Friday backed an option that splits up the two processes — repealing the law and then replacing it.

It’s move that Republicans have tried in 2015, but don’t seem to have the votes to push it through this time — many party senators oppose repealing the law — popularly known as Obamacare — without replacing it with a new one.

Even Trump had urged lawmakers to simultaneously repeal and replace Obamacare.

However, he reversed himself with a tweet on Friday: “If Republican Senators are unable to pass what they are working on now, they should immediately REPEAL, and then REPLACE at a later date!”

Senate Republicans had given themselves an unrealistic deadline of coming up with a bill reconciling the demands of their conservative and moderate members by Friday, before lawmakers broke for a long recess for July 4, the US independence day.

There was mixed response to Trump’s suggestion. Senators Ben Sasse and Rand Paul, who had been calling for separating the two processes, welcomed it, while others such as Susan Collins opposed it. Splitting up the process, critics say, will leave a lot of Americans uninsured till the passage of a replacement bill.