National Economic Council chairman Gary Cohn said in an MSNBC interview Thursday morning that “we can’t solve every issue in the healthcare bill” but “America will be happy with what we give them.”
Speaking with MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle, Cohn said there are “multiple issues that we’re trying to solve” by passing healthcare reform.
Earlier this week, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell delayed a vote on the Better Care Reconciliation Act after it became clear Republicans had nowhere near the number of votes needed to pass it. The decision came after the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office found that it would leave 22 million more people uninsured than the current baseline, a slight decrease from the 23 million figure the CBO predicted for the House version of the bill, known as the American Health Care Act.
Republican leadership is now working on altering the healthcare bill before attempting a vote after the July 4 recess.
“We can’t solve every issue in the healthcare bill,” Cohn said. “We’re going to tackle taxes. Yes, we’d love to cut some of the taxes that are in the Obamacare bill. And that would be a great thing to do. If we can’t cut them in the Obamacare bill, we’re still actively involved in … tax legislation.”
“What we do know, and we do know this for sure, is that Obamacare is failing,” he continued. “We know that there are many counties in this country that do not have an insurer. We know that premiums continue to go up. They’ve been going up 30% annually. We know that people are not getting what they thought they were going to get. The president is committed to fixing this.”
President Donald Trump on Wednesday promised a “big surprise” on healthcare. He met with Republican senators on Tuesday in hopes of finding some common ground on the bill, which, as Ruhle noted, is polling “in the teens” in terms of popularity.
“He’s spending as much time as he can having meetings at the White House, on the phone, working with the senators, working with the legislature,” Cohn, the former president of Goldman Sachs, said. “The vice president is equally committed. We are committed to getting healthcare and providing healthcare for American citizens that works for giving American citizens the product they want, not the product that Washington thinks they should have.”
Ruhle then asked, given how the healthcare bill is polling, “is that what America wants?”
“America will be happy with what we give them,” Cohn answered. “They’re going to have a product that they can buy, they’re going to have a product that’s going to be cheaper, it’s going to be a product that they get to tailor for their needs.”