Washington responds to House pulling the AHCA

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan conceded Friday that there are not enough votes to pass the American Health Care Act through his chamber.

Ryan needed 216 votes to pass the legislation that would repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with a system of flat tax credits dispersed to residents based on age, rather than based on income, like the ACA. The bill was widely criticized from both ends of the political spectrum. It was criticized by health care organizations, conservative think tanks and it got a glaringly bad report from the Congressional Budget Office. The bill was set for a vote Thursday, but that got delayed until Friday. Though changes were made to the bill to bring in the conservative Freedom Caucus vote, those alterations created problems for moderate Republicans, and ended up not satisfying the most conservative voting bloc in the House. Ryan pulled the bill Friday afternoon and admitted he couldn’t get the votes needed.

“You’ve all heard me say this before: Moving from an opposition party to a governing party comes with growing pains. And well, we’re feeling those growing pains today,” he said at a press conference after pulling the bill.

From across the country, in the other Washington, political leaders reacted.

Gov. Jay Inslee had criticized the bill since it was introduced, and issued several tweets Friday responding to the bill getting pulled.

Rep. Dave Reichert, who voted to pass the AHCA out of the Ways and Means Committee, later announced he was undecided on the bill, according to Seattle Times reporting. Seattle Times reporter Jim Brunner got a short response from Reichert’s office on the AHCA getting pulled.

Rep. Pramila Jayapal said any other efforts to push “Trumpcare” would be fought back.

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers issued a statement issued a statement indicating she was ready to move forward.

“Although I’m disappointed we couldn’t find consensus on how to repeal and replace Obamacare, I’m optimistic about the agenda House Republicans have proposed,” she said in her statement. “I’m eager to continue work on the many issues that are important to people in Eastern Washington and around the country, like lowering taxes and putting the people back at the center of our government.”

Erin Fenner: erin@washingtonstatewire.com, @erinfenner

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