Trump's failed attempt to rewrite Obamacare

  • 19/07/2017

President Donald Trump says he is deeply "disappointed" by the collapse of the Republican effort to rewrite Obamacare - former President Barack Obama's health care law.

Mr Trump told reporters during a lunch on Tuesday that Republicans have been talking for years about repealing and replacing Obamacare, and is disappointed they couldn't deliver.

Mr Trump said it's time to "Let Obamacare fail," and that "I'm not going to own it".

He says letting Obamacare fail will encourage Democrats to come to the table and negotiate.

Mr Trump said he does not blame Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for the decision by two more Republican senators to come out against the legislation, effectively killing the bill.

US Senate Republicans will now vote on a straight repeal of Obamacare after efforts to overhaul the law collapsed.

After two Republicans said they would not back the latest Obamacare rollback bill, Mr McConnell threw in the towel and said he would schedule a vote in coming days on a two-year transition to simply repealing the 2010 healthcare law with no replacement.

Mr Trump made repealing and replacing Obamacare a top campaign promise last year. Republicans have sought for seven years to gut the law.

Democrats were united in opposition against the Senate healthcare overhaul, calling it a giveaway to the rich that would hurt millions of the most vulnerable Americans.

The failure of the bill left Mr Trump with no major legislative achievements after almost six months in office and calls into question not only his ability to get other key parts of his agenda through Congress, but the Republican Party's capacity to govern effectively.

Mr Trump earlier urged an outright repeal, even as other Republicans sought a shift toward bipartisanship with Democrats. The setback sent the US dollar to a 10-month low against a basket of major currencies as investors worried about the impact on other administration reform efforts.

In an early morning Twitter message, Mr Trump said, "We were let down by all of the Democrats and a few Republicans. Most Republicans were loyal, terrific & worked really hard. We will return!"

Obamacare boosted the number of Americans with health insurance through mandates on individuals and employers, and income-based subsidies. About 20 million Americans gained insurance coverage through the law.