The New Jersey senator, Joe Manchin, has announced that he will vote against the Senate GOP bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare.
“It’s a disappointing vote.
We are very disappointed,” Manchin told reporters after meeting with Trump at the White House.
Trump called Manchin a “good friend” who “wants to work with me, I guess.”
“Joe Manchin is one of the people who are very important to us, and he’s gonna vote against it.
I can’t imagine what he would be thinking,” Trump said.
But Manchin’s decision will not be a surprise to Senate Republicans, who have been working behind the scenes to avoid a “Plan B” of a repeal-and-replace bill.
While Manchin has expressed reservations about the Senate bill, he was one of a handful of Republicans who stood firm on the Senate’s ObamaCare repeal-only strategy during the summer of 2017.
Manchin, who is also a co-sponsor of the Senate repeal-all legislation, said the Senate plan was a “bigger deal” than the Senate Republican plan.
“I have great respect for Senator Manchin,” Trump told reporters on Monday.
“He’s a really good friend of mine and he said a big deal, he’s a good friend to me, he knows the problems with the Senate proposal and he wants to work on it.”
Trump also said he and Manchin have “some big things to talk about” in regards to healthcare.