Speaker Ryan pulled the American Healthcare Act from the House floor on Friday, citing difficulty achieving the necessary votes to pass, per NBC.
Reports say Ryan apparently recommended that the bill be pulled to President Trump in a meeting Friday morning.
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Republicans left a closed-door conference meeting Thursday night more optimistic than they had been since the process began earlier in the week. About 30 Republicans stood to speak in support of the measure, according to a source in the room, motivating the caucus to move ahead.
But things took a turn for the worse Friday as the “no” votes kept growing. One particularly critical announcement came from Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen R.-N.J., the chair of the powerful House Appropriations Committee and an ally of House Speaker Paul Ryan, who came out against the bill.
Emergency meetings occurred all across Washington today, as Republican leaders worked to rally as many votes as possible.
Rep. Mark Wayne Mullins, R-Okla., who was helping Ryan convince members said that he posed one question to members: “When was the last time there was a perfect bill passed out of congress? It doesn’t exist,” he said. “Now is the time to pass the vote. Are you going to stand with our President Trump or are you going to stand with Obama and Obamacare.”
But by lunch time, House Speaker Paul Ryan traveled to the White House to meet with Trump. And Vice President Pence cancelled a planned trip and traveled to Capitol Hill — specifically the Republican Capitol Hill Club a block from the Capitol – to meet with the conservative House Freedom Caucus.
And things continued to get worse for the bill. Rep. Barbara Comstock, who is from a swing district in Northern Virginia, also came out Friday in opposition, according to her spokesperson. And so did Rep. David Joyce, R-Ohio, who had remained undecided until Friday afternoon.
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In the end, the votes were not there.
Most news suggest that, at this point, Republicans will move on to tackling other issues and leave Obamacare for another day.