When Donald Trump’s promise to “immediately” repeal and replace Obamacare with “something terrific” came to a screeching halt two months into his presidency, Fox News wasted no time helping him turn lemons into lemonade.
Here’s how the New York Times described the inability of Trump and the House Republicans to pass Trumpcare on Friday:
The failure of the Republicans’ three-month blitz to repeal President Barack Obama’s signature domestic achievement exposed deep divisions in the Republican Party that the election of a Republican president could not mask. It cast a long shadow over the ambitious agenda that Mr. Trump and Republican leaders had promised to enact once their party assumed power at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue.
And it was the biggest defeat of Mr. Trump’s young presidency, which has suffered many. His travel ban has been blocked by the courts. Allegations of questionable ties to the Russian government forced out his national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn. Tensions with key allies such as Germany, Britain and Australia are high, and Mr. Trump’s approval ratings are at historic lows.
But Trump, the Times noted, tried to suggest it was a win:
Mr. Trump, in a telephone interview moments after the bill was pulled, tried to put the most flattering light on it. “The best thing that could happen is exactly what happened — watch,” he said.
“Obamacare unfortunately will explode,” Mr. Trump said later. “It’s going to have a very bad year.” At some point, he said, after another round of big premium increases, “Democrats will come to us and say, ‘Look, let’s get together and get a great health care bill or plan that’s really great for the people of our country.’”
Apparently, Trump isn’t a bit upset that those of us he supposedly wanted to rescue from "the disaster" of Obamacare will have to suffer until Democrats are forced to get on their knees and beg assistance. Or maybe he knows that Obamacare is not the horror he has pretended it was.
Later, Bolling eagerly parroted the Trump spin.
Subbing for Bill O’Reilly on The O’Reilly Factor Friday night, Eric Bolling introduced a discussion by “asking,” “Critics are claiming today’s health care bill failure is a major loss for President Trump. But, could it actually turn into a win for his agenda?”
Then, as he began the discussion with Jessica Tarlov, Bolling said, “I’m gonna make a declaratory comment and you tell me where I’m wrong. It’s a win for Donald Trump and a win for America.”
Bolling’s argument was that the repeal bill was so bad, it would probably have hurt Trump in 2020. “You could make a case that this failure is a win for Trump,” he reiterated.
Boston Herald columnist Adriana Cohen agreed. She said that if premiums went up instead of down, it could cost the Republicans in the midterms, too.
Cohen suggested Trump “pivot now to areas where he can win,” such as tax and regulatory reform, “revising Dodd Frank” and “renegotiating NAFTA.”
Maybe the loss was a blessing in disguise. But win? No way.
You’ve got to wonder what it would take for Fox to admit a Trump defeat.
Crossposted at News Hounds.
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