Robert Gehl reports that, in public, President Donald Trump is praising House Speaker Paul Ryan and his efforts to pass the Obamacare replacement bill, despite its ultimate failure.
“I like speaker Ryan, he worked very, very hard,” Trump said after the legislation was pulled at the last minute.
But behind the scenes, White House officials blame the Wisconsin Senator for the bill’s humiliating defeat – especially since repealing Obamacare was a campaign promise for Republicans for the last eight years.
“This is another example of the staff not serving the president well and the weakness of the Paul Ryan speakership,” a source close to President Trump told Breitbart. “This calls into question once again the speaker’s commitment to supporting Donald Trump and his agenda.”
“Speaker Ryan proved today that he does not have the best interests of the President at heart,” said another source close to the president. “He sold out the president and showed his word can be taken with a grain of salt. There is only one course of action that should be taken to move past this catastrophe and that is the swift removal of Paul Ryan from the speakership.”
There is now talk in the halls of Congress about finding a replacement for Ryan.
After the 2016 election, Politico reported that there were enough votes to replace Ryan as House Speaker, but the President’s embrace of him was what saved his job. The White House sources told Breitbart that Trump feels he has saved Ryan “multiple times already.
Bloomberg is reporting that Ryan had little choice in supporting Trump’s insistence that the bill come to a vote Friday. And once Ryan notified that President that the bill simply didn’t have enough votes to pass, Trump agreed Ryan should pull the bill and that Ryan shouldn’t be blamed.
Trump later said Democrats were ultimately to blame for the failure of the legislation because they didn’t support the bill.
“I think the real losers are Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer,” Trump said, referring to the Democratic leaders of the House and Senate. “Because now they own it, they 100 percent own it.”
Trump said the smartest political strategy might be to sit back and simply let Obamacare implode – but he didn’t want to see that happen.
Ryan praised Trump for his negotiating efforts to get the bill passed. “The president gave his all in this effort,” Ryan said. “He did everything he possibly could to help people see the opportunity we had with this bill. He’s really been fantastic.”
Ultimately the bill failed because the most conservative members of the House – known as the Freedom Caucus – wouldn’t support key measures in the bill.
Shortly after the bill was pulled, Trump called Washington Post reporter Robert Costa and said he had no ill will toward Ryan.
"I don't blame Paul," Trump tells me
— Robert Costa (@costareports) March 24, 2017