President Donald Trump is all in, and he better be, because if he loses the fight to replace the ACA with the GOP’s American Health Care Act (AHCA) it will inflict a deep political wound early in his administration. The New York Times reports that Trump is flexing the negotiating skills he’s honed over decades and which helped to make him a household name even before becoming president.
It seems to be working as the AHCA picks up legislative steam, yesterday being approved by both the House Energy and Commerce, and the Ways and Means Committees passed the measure along party-line votes. Now it goes to the House Budget Committee and then onto a House vote.
Some conservative legislators (most notably Sen. Rand Paul) don’t like the law, calling it Obmacare lite. Trump’s wining and dining legislators who are on the fence and is even hosting bowling soirees. In other words, Trump is being Trump. That’s a phrase made famous after President Ronald Reagan lost the first debate to former Vice President Walter Mondale in 1984 presidential contest. Reagan had been overmanaged, some historians say, and the word went out that his aides should “let Reagan be Reagan.” There is no indication so far that anyone can stop Trump from being Trump.
Part of the art of the deal is to know when not to come on too strong. As the New York Times reports, “For all of Mr. Trump’s characteristic bluster, the self-described king of the deal is treading gingerly on the actual policies in the bill. Since members of the hard-line House Freedom Caucus complained that they were not being listened to by the House Republican leadership, Mr. Trump has sought to bring them along by listening to their concerns before dictating his desires, his advisers say.”
Start: New York Times