What Newt Gingrich Sees as Missteps by Trump, House Leaders in Failed Obamacare Repeal

Tom Simonet, a professor of journalism at Rider University, after the Gingrich speech with journalism major Brandon Scalea from Marlboro, New Jersey. (Photo: Kevin Mooney/The Daily Signal)

LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J.—House Republican leaders made a big mistake by trying to rush through their plan to replace Obamacare, conservative star Newt Gingrich says.

And, Gingrich adds, President Donald Trump should have waited longer to step in.

Instead of setting unrealistic timelines that don’t account for the complexity of health care policy, the former House speaker said during a speaking engagement, Republican leaders should have allowed for a vigorous debate that could stretch out for months.

“I actually think the system, if you let it, works pretty well,” Gingrich told an audience of about 1,000 at Rider University’s Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics.

“But to work well takes time,” he said. “You have to have hearings, then you have to have markups, then you have to find out what is good, and the leadership has to realize it may not be perfect. Maybe it could be improved.”

The day after Gingrich spoke, one of his successors, House Speaker Paul Ryan, pulled Republican leadership’s Obamacare replacement bill—the American Health Care Act—for lack of enough votes as conservatives and some centrists refused to embrace it.

Trump got involved and put himself on the line too early in the Obamacare repeal debate, Gingrich argued.

“The time for President Trump to …read more