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Fallout continues over health care bill

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Pillard: Trump takes the L

Cong. Dave Brat of Virginia, who is also a member of Freedom Caucus, noted that the public approval for the health care bill was only 17%.

On the short road to last Friday, Republicans got caught up in the typical Washington response to a crisis: We must pass something, anything for the sake of doing something.

Later Thursday, the President called out individual Freedom Caucus members in several tweets. Just 21 percent say they supported it, with a majority, 52 percent, saying they were opposed.

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence spoke with several House members over the weekend to discuss a path forward, a senior administration official and Republican official with knowledge of the discussions told CNN.

While members of all ideological stripes expressed hopes that the American Health Care Act could be resurrected in the coming weeks, none could say specifically what they would be willing to accept this week that they would not accept last week - when a frantic push from Trump and House GOP leaders left hard-line conservatives and moderates opposing the bill.

"They rolled it out after it was hidden away". "It depends on if they take a good path or a bad path", he said in an interview.

Fifty-eight percent disapproved of his overall performance as president, not much different from his negative grade on health care. "We had none of that".

In a Twitter post, Trump took aim at the Freedom Caucus, a bloc of the most conservative Republicans in the US House of Representatives, indicating he would try to defeat them in next year's congressional elections if they continued to defy him.

They were also more popular than Trump in November, winning by larger margins. Trump was disappointed with them for blocking the American Health Care Act to repeal and replace Obamacare.

House Republicans emerged from a members-only meeting Tuesday morning to bullishly declare the health care legislative battle is not over.

"We are trying to help the president, but the fact is you have got to look at the legislation, and it doesn't do what we told the voters we were going to do and the American people understand that", Jordan told the television network on Thursday.

In the Senate, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was more frank that it was time to get to other issues. We don't have the option of inaction.

While some House Republicans remain focused on "repeal and replace", a new conversation in Congress is starting on a different "R" word when it comes to Obamacare: fix. "Our Democratic friends ought to be pretty happy about that because we have the existing law in place and I think we're just going to have to see how that works out".

Asked about moderates who want to preserve those aspects of the health care law, Brooks, said: "If the American people want a repeal of Obamacare, then they need to start electing Republicans who will repeal Obamacare". The one bright spot for the GOP is Trump's nomination of conservative appeals court Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, which will be considered on the Senate floor the week of April 3. And there was no off-the-shelf Trump legislation that Congress could begin on immediately. In the past such spending deadlines have been occasions for brinkmanship, including in 2013 when conservatives forced a 16-day partial government shutdown in a failed attempt to defund Obamacare. The budget plan House Democrats released this week would spend $56.3 million over two years to freeze undergraduate resident tuition, along with $72.7 million to extend state financial aid to 6,000 additional students. They will agree to make the necessary tweaks to shore up Obamacare, but will agree to nothing more, knowing that Trump and Republicans will own all of the political fallout if people get hurt. Whether it be a budget that cripples social programs for the poor and elderly or a health-care plan that would see the repeal of almost 24 million American's health care, Trump seems to only care about his own inflated sense of ego and the need for validation that can only come from constant winning and the adoration of supporters.

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