SPOTLIGHT

House Majority Fight Enters New Phase

The Obamacare replacement vote is coming to a TV screen near you.

President Donald Trump smiles at Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., after the House pushed through a health care bill, in the Rose Garden of the White House, Thursday, May 4, 2017, in Washington.
AP Photo/Evan Vucci
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Kyle Trygstad
May 5, 2017, 9:48 a.m.

To what ex­tent vul­ner­able House Re­pub­lic­ans will be neg­at­ively af­fected by Thursday’s pas­sage of an Obama­care re­place­ment bill can’t be known just yet, con­sid­er­ing the midterms aren’t for an­oth­er year and a half.

But after months of rowdy town halls, com­pet­it­ive spe­cial elec­tions in Re­pub­lic­an ter­rit­ory, and Pres­id­ent Trump’s ap­prov­al rat­ing mired in the low 40s, the health care vote is un­likely to help the sig­ni­fic­ant swath of the con­fer­ence that already had ser­i­ous reelec­tion chal­lenges on their hands.

In the near term, the vote will un­doubtedly only add to the on­slaught of Demo­crat­ic can­did­ates step­ping for­ward to run, in­clud­ing for seats long held by Re­pub­lic­ans—which is crit­ic­al for cap­it­al­iz­ing on a midterm cycle with the po­ten­tial for wave con­di­tions.

The spot­light is on the 14 Re­pub­lic­ans in dis­tricts car­ried by Hil­lary Clin­ton who voted for the bill. Daily Kos Elec­tions poin­ted out that—ex­clud­ing Utah—10 more Re­pub­lic­ans who sup­por­ted it are in dis­tricts Trump won with less than 50 per­cent.

Twenty-four hap­pens to be the ex­act num­ber of seats Demo­crats must net to win the House ma­jor­ity, though that doesn’t take in­to ac­count Geor­gia’s 6th, which Trump car­ried with 48 per­cent and Demo­crats hope to pick up in a spe­cial elec­tion next month.

Kyle Tryg­stad

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