Ryan: Focus is on keeping government open, not healthcare

Greg Nash

Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) pledged Saturday to focus on passing a spending bill to keep the government open in the coming week, while Republicans continue to work on legislation to repeal and replace ObamaCare.

During a conference call, Ryan told House Republicans that while healthcare is still a priority, the spending bill will be the “primary focus” of the coming week, according to a GOP source on the call.

Despite White House suggestions that the new healthcare bill might receive a vote next week, Ryan said that his priority is to pass a stopgap spending bill that will keep the government open past April 28.

“Wherever we land will be a product the president can and will support,” Ryan said, according to a GOP source on the call.

The passage of the spending bill will likely require support of Democrats who have not welcomed President Trump’s demand to include in the legislation funding for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Several aides told The Washington Post that there is no guarantee that the president will sign a bill that does not contain border wall funding.

Meanwhile, Republican lawmakers on Saturday’s conference-wide call were told that they are getting closer to a deal between centrists and conservatives on healthcare legislation that could pass the House.

However, no deal is in place yet and Republicans speaking on the call said there wouldn’t be a vote until it was certain that there was enough support to pass the legislation.

“The votes will drive the timing of this,” one GOP lawmaker on the call told The Hill


– Cristina Marcos contributed
Updated: 9:32 p.m.
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