March 24, 2017

Top Stories

Look What House Intel Committee Chair Nunes Hath Wrought

The Gist: Devin Nunes's vague and cagey claims were seized upon in a rush of breathless, speculative, and, in some cases, incorrect reports that claimed Trump was telling the truth about having his "wires tapped" all along.

Trump Calls Out Freedom Caucus In Tweet Ahead Of Uncertain Repeal Vote

The Gist: As Republicans geared up for a vote on their bill to repeal and replace Obamacare on Friday morning, despite uncertainty that leaders had gained enough support to pass the bill, President Donald Trump tried to push the conservative Freedom Caucus to back the legislation.

Mulvaney: If Your State Doesn't Mandate Maternity Care, Change Your State

The Gist: Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, one of the top administration officials who had been working to pass the bill to repeal and replace Obamacare, on Friday morning brushed off concerns about a new provision in the bill that repeals the Essential Health Benefits requirement.

From The Reporter's Notebook

President Trump climbed into the driver's seat of a truck on the South lawn of the White House Thursday as uncertainty swirled around the vote on the Republicans' bill to repeal and replace Obamacare, TPM's Kristin Salaky reported. Trump then joked as if he were driving the truck and honked the horn to applause from the crowd.

Agree or Disagree?

David Kurtz: "A very strange day in Washington as Republicans failed, as they have for seven years, to come up with a viable alternative to Obamacare. The nugget that probably best captures the day came from the Congressional Budget Office. It assessed the most recent version of the bill and concluded that it will still take coverage away from 24 million people, just like the original version of the bill, but will cost an additional $186 billion to do so. Let me say that again: The revised bill spends $186 billion more to not cover the same number of people. What a win!"

BUZZING: Today in the Hive

From a TPM Prime member: "That's the two things a Speaker cares about most if he's going to be effective and botching this first vote two months into the new Republican Era is a disaster for him. The fact that Trump neither understands this, nor would care even if he did, is just not the way this is supposed to work. Trump's focus is on Trump and he's made that clear since he announced. He'll be calling it a terrible bill when it fails and leave Ryan hanging because it's always the fault of somebody else. How long will it be before they say,'Enough!' Reince Priebus has been noticeably absent in all this which means that there is a breach between the GOP leadership and the administration, so whatever deal which was made to ally the two in the run up to the election is no longer on solid ground. They're one ill-advised tweet away from a schism. "

Related: GOP Obamacare Repeal Bill Clears Final Hurdle Before Heading To House Floor

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What We're Reading

The Ethical Minefield of 'Missing Richard Simmons' (The Atlantic)

The Gig Economy Celebrates Working Yourself to Death (The New Yorker)