Politico: Inside Trump's quiet effort to revive the health care bill

Healthcare Apr 30, 2017

The healthcare bill is always very interesting to follow. In every article there seems to be a dearth of quotes. Fortunately, Tara Palmeri at Politico wrote a wonderful article that was full of quotes. There were 11, to be exact.

Here’s a list of all the quotes in the article.

“I’m going back to it. I’m not going to give it up,” he said the last weekend of March, according to a person close to the President.

Wow. A person close to the President. That’s legitimate.

the president singled out Meadows and two other prominent Freedom Caucus members in a tweet: “If @RepMarkMeadows, @Jim_Jordan and @Raul_Labrador would get on board we would have both great healthcare and massive tax cuts & reform.”

A tweet! A real quote! Can we find another?

“I think a lot of people had the sense of not accomplishing our goal,” said [Marc] Short [the White House legislative affairs director]. “I think there was a collective interest to revisit it.”

Either Mr. Short did an interview, or this is second hand. I’m guessing the latter.

. . . according to another Freedom Caucus staffer. “When the president said we’re moving on, we just didn’t,” this person said.

Another unnamed source.

. . . according to a Leadership aide. “The speaker was involved but not very hands on in this process,” said the aide. “We were monitoring the situation, from the speaker’s perspective, he was encouraging them to make progress.”

Again, an unnamed source.

Trump had a back-and-forth with Tuesday Group chairman Charlie Dent, who said, “Honestly, I’m still not there, I’m not there.”

Who’s the source for this quote? Did Representative Dent give an interview? Was Ms. Palmeri there? Perhaps this comes from another staffer with familiarity with situation?

“The President was saying, ‘We have to get a win,’ and that was his pitch,” the official said. “He said ‘No one is getting what they want here, but we have to get a deal, we have to get a win.’”

Once again, according to whom?

“I want to hear the president say he needs my support for the bill,” said Aderholt, whose district voted overwhelmingly for Trump, according to three people who were in the room.

Ah, three people in the room! Not just one, not two, three!

McHenry said: “Now look at the president and tell him you’re going to vote the for the bill.” Aderholt came out for the bill.

This presumably comes from the same three people.

“The president overestimated his ability to get people into the Oval office and make some deals, and over-estimated how it would work for principled conservatives,” said another White House official.

Seriously, what is a White House official?

“I think Vice President Mike Pence has taken a personal interest in this issue, he’s been relentless on the phone and in meetings with members of Congress from all stripes,” said Americans for Prosperity president Tim Phillips. “He’s been persistent about keeping outside groups in the loop and talking about potential compromise language.”

In the last paragraph a second real quote that might not be second hand!

I ignored all the paraphrased sections. I’m not sure why there’s a need to paraphrase, though, what with all these unbiased sources with eidetic memories.

Is this journalism or a game of telephone?