Trump aides offered a GOP senator a ride on Air Force One in exchange for health care vote: report
During the unsuccessful push to repeal Obamacare, the Trump administration reportedly tried to link riding on Air Force One to promising to vote for the bill.
“When Mr. Trump addressed a Boy Scouts jamboree last month in West Virginia, White House aides told Senator Shelley Moore Capito, a Republican from the state whose support was in doubt, that she could only accompany him on Air Force One if she committed to voting for the health care bill,” The New York Times reports. “She declined the invitation, noting that she could not commit to voting for a measure she had not seen, according to Republican briefed on the conversation.”
Two weeks later, Sen. Capito rode on Air Force One when President Trump returned to West Virginia for a campaign-style rally.
“As I have said before, I did not come to Washington to hurt people,” Sen. Capito explained when she voted no on repealing the Affordable Care Act. “My position on this issue is driven by its impact on West Virginians. With that in mind, I cannot vote to repeal Obamacare without a replacement plan that addresses my concerns and the needs of West Virginians.”
During the push for repeal, the Trump administration also dispatched Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to threaten the economy of Alaska over the bill.
The Interior Department’s Office of the Inspector General has since opened a “preliminary investigation” into Zinke’s conduct.
Also on Air Force One with Trump: West Virginia Sen Shelley Moore Capito pic.twitter.com/ucxC27vcUB
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) August 3, 2017