Now the big health care vote in Congress is set for Friday

The White House says negotiations are over and it's time to approve the bill on the table or let Obamacare stay.
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At the end of a long day of negotiations, President Trump and Republican leaders in Congress said they're done talking and are ready for an up-or-down vote on a new health care law.

The White House budget director told Republican lawmakers in a closed-door meeting Thursday night that Trump wants a Friday vote on a bill to replace Obamacare, adding that if it fails the president is ready to leave the existing law in place, Politico reports.

Several news outlets describe Thursday night's message as an ultimatum, though CNN says House Speaker Paul Ryan was also in on the decision to force the issue in a Friday vote, rather than continuing efforts to win over Republicans not happy with the health care bill.

One lawmaker who was in the Capitol meeting paraphrased Trump's budget director this way: "'Negotiations are over, we'd like to vote tomorrow and let's get this done for the American people.' That was it," Duncan Hunter of California told the Associated Press.

Thursday vote was called off

Thursday was the 7-year anniversary of former President Obama signing the Affordable Care Act into law. Many Republicans hoped to replace "Obamacare" on that anniversary, but a House vote scheduled for Thursday evening was postponed when it became clear there were not enough votes for the new plan to pass.

Trump and Ryan have been meeting with Republicans who are not supporting the measure. Those negotiations continued through the day Thursday.

As the New York Times notes, a conservative faction thinks the bill is too expensive and leaves too many mandates in place, while moderate Republicans are concerned about the number of people who would go uninsured under the new plan.

The Congressional Budget Office came out with a new assessment of the bill Thursday, after some changes were made to try to win over House members. But the CBO's estimate that the number of uninsured would rise by 14 million next year and by 24 million in a decade did not change.

A poll released by Quinnipiac University Thursday found 56 percent of respondents disapprove of the Republican health care plan, 17 percent approve of it, and 26 percent are undecided.

Repealing Obamacare has been a Republican campaign promise for years. The Associated Press called the decision to either replace it Friday or leave it in place a "part gamble, part threat" by the White House.

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