President Trump on Thursday said Senate Republicans will return to healthcare reform as soon as Congress passes tax cuts, claiming GOP leaders still have the votes to pass a bill that would redirect federal funding for Obamacare to the states.
"We are very close. We have the votes and as soon as we're finished with taxes – we feel we have the votes and will get block grants back into the states," the president said during a joint press conference with his Greek counterpart Alex Tspiras.
Trump said his administration is still urging Republicans to pass legislation co-sponsored by GOP Sens. Lindsey Graham, S.C., and Bill Cassidy, La., which would allocate federal funds that previously went to Obamacare to all 50 states in the form of block grants.
"We're in great shape. I think we have the votes and we'll be doing that after the largest tax cuts in history," he said.
But Trump also endorsed a bipartisan deal reached by Sens. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., and Patty Murray, D-Wash., earlier Tuesday that would stabilize the healthcare market by extending Obamacare payments to insurers for two years.
"We have been involved and this is a short-term deal because we think, ultimately, block grants going to the states is a good answer," Trump said, adding Alexander "has been working very, very hard with his colleagues on the other side."
"The solution will be for about a year or two years," the president told reporters after describing Obamacare as "virtually dead."