Following significant delays, a rigorous debate and Speaker Paul Ryan’s dour warnings about not having enough votes, Donald Trump asked the top House Republican and his colleagues to pull Friday’s rescheduled vote for the American Health Care Act. Murmurs of such a scenario began spreading soon after the House debate came to a conclusion when GOP leaders called for a recess and left the chamber for a closed-door huddle among party members. A strange move, to be sure, since the vote was supposed to happen as soon as the debate ended.
Meanwhile, the Washington Post‘s Robert Costa began live tweeting a conversation he was having with the president as the drama was unfolding at the House. “We just pulled it,” Trump told him, referencing the Trumpcare bill vote and his previous conversation with Ryan. Even so, as Costa later added, the president claimed, “I don’t blame Paul.”
CNN subsequently confirmed the news to a degree, citing an anonymous source with knowledge of the matter who told the outlet Trump asked Ryan during their last-minute meeting Friday afternoon to pull the House vote. Meanwhile, the speaker will deliver a press conference addressing the delayed AHCA vote and House Republicans’ plans going forward early Friday evening.