My advice for Republicans who are angry or fearful about the health care bill not passing the Senate is this: Chill out. It will get done. This is a huge project and we have plenty of time to get it done. President Donald Trump has only been in office for six months, and crafting a good bill to deal with a huge percentage of the U.S. economy will take time.
If we want a quick political victory and (more importantly) better health care policy, then my thought is this: If the American Health Care Act is an improvement over ObamaCare, then pass it and come back for more improvements later. I do not have a problem with incrementally advancing the conservative agenda, provided we actually are advancing the conservative agenda. We can pass something small now, and then pass smaller reforms over the next three or seven years.
With that said, there is a lot to be said for the perspective that if we are going to do this, then we should do it right. We do not need to pass a bill in July 2017, if we can work on improving the bill and get something better in September or January 2018 or May 2018. Yes, it will get more difficult as time goes on because of the 2018 elections, but from a policy standpoint something this big is worth doing correctly the first time instead of passing something we will need to improve later.
Finally, we need to recognize that disagreement is not dereliction of duty We have 52 Republicans in the Senate, all of whom are individuals who have 52 different political philosophies and who represent different constituencies. You will never get 52 people to agree 100% on anything that big and complex. You will not even get two or three people to agree on anything that big and complex. The fact that some Republicans may disagree with parts of the ACHA and want to stop it until they get something better does not mean they are not “doing their job.” It means they are “doing their job” by trying to get the best policy they can get.
We need to all calm down and let this play out.