President Donald Trump this week lamented the difficulty of passing the Republican healthcare plan though Congress, likening it to the decadeslong Israel-Palestine conflict, The Hill reports.
“I’d say the only thing more difficult than peace between Israel and the Palestinians is healthcare,” he told reporters aboard Air Force One on Wednesday night en route to France.
The comments came one day before Senate Republican leaders unveiled a revised version of their bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare, with the hopes of holding a vote next week. Leaders still face an uphill battle in finding enough votes to pass the bill, with both moderate and conservative senators opposed to the updated measure.
“It’s like this narrow road that’s about a quarter of an inch wide. You get a couple here and you say, great, and then you find out you just lost four over here. Healthcare is tough,” Trump said of the vote-counting operation.
However, he voiced optimism that Congress would eventually send healthcare legislation to his desk before lawmakers leave Washington for the August recess, which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell delayed due to the upper chamber’s heavy workload.
“I think we’re going to have something that’s really good and that people are going to like. We’re going to find out over the next — you know, we just extended for two weeks,” Trump said.
The exchange was initially declared off the record, but Trump gave journalists permission to report on his comments Thursday. The White House then circulated a transcript of selected excerpts of his remarks, which lasted roughly an hour.