KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Trump To Put Some White House Muscle Into Rallying Conservatives Ahead Of Health Vote

President Donald Trump already flipped some "no" votes to "yes" last week, and he's expected to keep up the efforts as he works with GOP leadership to get their health plan through the House.

Politico: White House Squeezes GOP Hard-Liners As Obamacare Vote Nears
During a meeting at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida Saturday, the president’s top advisers told three of the most vocal conservative opponents of the bill — Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) and House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) — that they agree with some of their demands in principle, according to several sources familiar with the discussions. But it’s also become increasingly apparent to the White House that the conservatives’ requests, which include phasing out Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion earlier and deregulating the insurance industry, are unlikely to pass the Senate. (Bade, Dawsey and Everett, 3/19)

NPR: Trump Faces Critical Phase, As He Tries To Make His Rhetoric Reality
Donald Trump likes to move fast. But to this point, for all the bravado, executive actions and tweets, much of Trump's presidency has been showy without a lot of practical effect. For that to change, much of it could depend on the next three weeks. This critical phase could set his ambitious agenda on course or derail it. (Montanaro, 3/20)

The New York Times: On Health Law, G.O.P. Faces A Formidable Policy Foe: House Republicans
Halfway through Congress’s 2013 summer recess, a letter landed on the desks of House Republican leaders demanding a new strategy to fight “one of the largest grievances in our time.” Give Congress the option to defund the Affordable Care Act, it said, or risk shutting down the government. Republican leaders condemned the idea, and the 80 House Republicans who signed the letter acquired a nickname, courtesy of the conservative commentator Charles Krauthammer — the “suicide caucus.” (Huetteman, 3/20)

The Associated Press: With Friends Like These: Trump Struggles To Win GOP
Congressional Republicans have a lot to say about their new president. Donald Trump's proposed budget is "draconian, careless and counterproductive." The health care plan is a bailout that won't pass. And his administration's suggestion that former President Barack Obama used London's spy agency for surveillance is simply "inexplicable." With friends like these, who needs Democrats? (Lerer, 3/18)

The Hill: Paul Predicts GOP Healthcare Plan Will Fail
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on Sunday said he does not believe proposed Republican healthcare legislation will pass through Congress. "I don't believe so. I think there's enough conservatives that do not want 'ObamaCare lite,' " Paul said on ABC's "This Week." Paul during the interview stressed a clean repeal of ObamaCare. (Shelbourne, 3/19)

Bloomberg: Keep Trump's Promise, Pence Tells Republicans On Health Bill 
Vice President Mike Pence called on Congress to “keep the president’s promise” during an event in Florida to shore up support for a contentious health-care bill, but didn’t address the finding that has moderate Republicans most worried: that 14 million Americans may lose health coverage in a year. “We’re going to continue to work with members of Congress to improve this bill,” Pence said in Jacksonville after meeting with small business owners. He noted a plan that would allow states to include a work requirement for able-bodied adults to receive Medicaid. (Olorunnipa, 3/17)

The Hill: HHS Secretary: Trump Committed To Insurance For Everyone 
Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price on Sunday reaffirmed President Trump’s goal to provide healthcare insurance for all Americans. “The president is committed to that as am I and those of us at the Department of Health and Human Services,” Price told host Jake Tapper on CNN's "State of the Union." Price repeatedly stressed that the Republicans' healthcare proposal is in the first of three phases. (Beavers, 3/19)

The Hill: Price Shoots Down Clean Repeal Of ObamaCare 
Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price on Sunday shot down a clean repeal of ObamaCare, arguing that doing so would put “vulnerable people at risk.” “What that does is place vulnerable people at risk, and that’s not something that the president’s willing to do, it’s not something that he said he would do,” Price told ABC’s “This Week" when asked what is wrong with a clean repeal. (Shelbourne, 3/19)

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