OPINION: Republicans prove inept in first test

The month of March marked a seminal defeat for the Trump White House and congressional Republicans. The American Health Care Act, the long-awaited Republican answer to “Obamacare,” went down without a vote

as House Speaker Paul Ryan pulled the un popular bill.

From the moment the “Obamacare” Af fordable Care Act passed both houses of Congress and was signed into law by then President Barack Obama, Republicans have promised to get rid of the damn thing.

But a funny thing happened. After a disastrous roll-out, people got a taste of  Obamacare. And they liked it. So for seven years, Republicans found themselves like the Grinch on Mount Krumpet, looking down on the insured Demo-Whos’ celebrating Obama carving up the roast beast.

They decided to dispense with subtleties and nominated an actual Grinch to lead  their party.

“My first day in office, I am going to ask Congress to put a bill on my desk getting rid of this disastrous law and replacing it with reforms that expand choice, freedom, affordability,” Donald Trump said in 2016  while running for president.

This should have been a red flag to low income Americans who find themselves on state assistance for health care, whether through Medicare or Medicaid. You know,  Trump’s base. They were warned. Nevertheless, they  persisted.

Trump is in office. Republicans, who grew so adept at saying “no” for a decade,  realized they had to govern. They are now realizing they preferred opposing Obama. Unfortunately for Ryan, that didn’t get  his poop-burger health care legislation through the House.

Trumpcare (or Ryancare if you prefer)  was unpopular among Democrats and Republicans for its cuts to Medicaid and  elimination of the individual mandate.The House Freedom Caucus, the Elmer Fudd-Yosemite Sam wing of the Republican Party, rejected and ultimately sealed the bill’s fate because it didn’t go far enough.

Trump lashed out at them specifically.  “Democrats are smiling in D.C. that the Freedom Caucus, with the help of Club For Growth and Heritage, have saved Planned Parenthood & Ocare!” Trump tweeted on March 26.

Democrats were celebrating, and rightfully so. “You may be a great negotiator,” Nancy Pelosi said to The Donald. “Rookie’s error for bringing this up on a day you clearly are not ready.”

Really, this error falls on Ryan. Mr. PolicyWonk had been promising a plan for “repeal and replace” for the better part of  a decade. When it was shown the light of day, everyone hated it and he couldn’t even rally his majority party to pass it.

The president has a word for this. Sad.

Eddie Celaya, the Aztec Press news editor, follows politics closely.

Eddie Celaya

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