Pence opposed Obamacare repeal at 'heated' White House meeting — here's why Trump pushed it anyway: report
Mike Pence appears at Washington Post event (screen grab)

President Donald Trump reportedly decided to go ahead with his push to repeal the Affordable Care Act in spite of criticisms from his vice president, attorney general and White House counsel.


The New York Times reported that Trump's plan to repeal Obamacare is backed by acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and Joe Grogan, the man Mulvaney chose to lead the Domestic Policy Council.

According to the Times' Maggie Haberman and Robert Pear, White House counsel Pat Cipillone, Attorney General William Barr and Vice President Mike Pence all had "concerns" about the president's current plan to repeal the Obama administration's signature healthcare law.

During a "heated" Oval Office meeting on Monday, the Times reported, the pro- and anti-repeal factions fought over the president's plan to take the issue to the courts after Congress failed to get rid of the law earlier in the Trump administration.

Pence, the report noted, "was concerned about the political ramifications of moving ahead without a strategy or a plan to handle the suddenly uninsured if the suit succeeds."

After the testy meeting, a smaller one was held in which Cipillone and Mulvaney's tensions were apparent.

Eventually, the acting chief of staff and his policy appointee won it out, reminding Trump that he campaigned on ACA repeal and that "his base would love it."

On Wednesday, Axios reported that House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) implored Trump not to push Obamacare repeal through the courts and the former communications director for the Republican National Committee also warned that such a move would backfire for the president.

"Having worked (wholly unsuccessfully!) on Obamacare replacement in 2014, I've seen up close how Republicans can't agree on much of anything re healthcare," ex-RNC comms director Doug Heye tweeted. "To move anything, Trump Admin will have to go all in, long-term. Doesn't seem terribly likely."