White House: Steve King now a yes on ObamaCare bill

White House: Steve King now a yes on ObamaCare bill
© Greg Nash

Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) plans to support the GOP ObamaCare replacement bill, according to the White House.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer mentioned King's decision to support the legislation during a press briefing on Wednesday.


“I'm not going to share our whip count. I know we saw Lou BarlettaLouis (Lou) James BarlettaPennsylvania state senator to run for governor, joining crowded GOP primary field Josh Shapiro officially launches Pennsylvania gubernatorial campaign Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro enters governor's race MORE, who was a hard no, come out, he’s a yes. Steve King, I believe had been a no. He’s a yes. Member by member, we are seeing tremendous support flow in our direction and the count keeps getting stronger for us," Spicer said.

During an Oval Office meeting later Wednesday, Trump committed to doing everything he could to repeal ObamaCare’s “essential health benefits” in the Senate. That pledge was enough to bring King on board.

Trump and the Iowa Republican shook hands after the president made the announcement, people in the meeting said.

"There’s a firm, firm commitment from the majority leader in the Senate, Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDemocrats make final plea for voting rights ahead of filibuster showdown Mellman: Voting rights or the filibuster?  Budowsky: To Dems: Run against the do-nothing GOP, Senate MORE, that he will offer a manager’s amendment to strike out the mandates that are written into ObamaCare," King said a short time later on Facebook Live. 

"I have a full and firm commitment, with many witnesses, from President Trump that he will use his political leverage, to go public and work hard to get the Mitch McConnell amendment passed, which just takes a simple majority in the Senate, and it would comply with the reconciliation package," King added.  

Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Pa.), one of the first lawmakers to endorse Trump, said Wednesday he'd vote for the bill after saying earlier this week he would oppose it.

His decision to vote for the bill stemmed from a pledge from Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanOn The Trail: Retirements offer window into House Democratic mood Stopping the next insurrection Former Sen. Bob Dole dies at 98 MORE (R-Wis.) that the House would vote next month on his bill to ensure immigrants in the U.S. illegally don't have access to healthcare tax credits.

King had previously said he didn't think the GOP healthcare plan went far enough.

“My job is going to be to try to make the best we can out of this. If that means in the end we can’t get it fixed and we have to be working to sink the bill, that’s one of the other ways of approaching this,” King told Breitbart News last week.

Upated 5:13 p.m.