The Tea Party Express has decided to back the GOP bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare hours before a pivotal vote in the House.
“Admittedly, this is far from a perfect repeal, and no conservative would propose this if it weren’t for the reality of the obstructionist Democrats in the Senate,” Tea Party Express co-founder Sal Russo wrote in a Medium post explaining the decision.
The former staffer to President Ronald Reagan went on to paraphrase the conservative president's approach to negotiations with Democrats: If they offer you half a loaf, what do you do? You take half a loaf and then you come back for more.
Other major Tea Party and grassroots conservative groups have come out against the bill despite calls by President Trump for its passage. The Club for Growth and Heritage Action are among its opponents.
Russo framed Friday's vote as a “take-it-or-leave-it moment” for conservatives and said he hoped that passing the bill through the House would keep the negotiation going as the bill works its way through the Senate.
“We will continue to support the efforts of conservatives to improve this bill and advance the plan to repeal and replace Obamacare. But regardless of the outcome of specific amendments, we must all keep President Reagan’s advice in mind and plan on going back for more,” he said.
“If this bill fails, those battles will only get tougher. We cannot afford for our friends within the conservative movement to insist on letting the perfect be the enemy of the good — which to many voters, is exactly what’s happening.”
Tea Party Express rose to prominence in 2009 in large part due to its criticism of former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaFormer Sen. Heller to run for Nevada governor Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by Climate Power — Senate Democrats ding Biden energy proposal Business coalition aims to provide jobs to Afghan refugees MORE's signature healthcare plan. The group held rallies across the country blasting ObamaCare as a government takeover of healthcare.