House GOP leaders delay healthcare repeal and replace vote

WASHINGTON D.C. (KUSI) — House GOP leaders have delayed a vote scheduled for Thursday on a bill to repeal and replace Obamacare.  

The decision came after President Donald Trump failed to reach an agreement with a the House Freedom Caucus, a group of far-right republicans who did not find the bill conservative enough. The Associated Press said some moderate-leaning Republicans also refused to back the bill. 

Wednesday — The House of Representatives will vote Thursday on a measure to repeal and replace Obamacare.

The president and members of his staff met Wednesday with lawmakers opposed to the bill. They’re trying to persuade them to change their minds and vote in favor of the measure.

Vice President Pence hit the local airwaves to sell the bill and Republican leadership is using a mix of tactics with their colleagues, meeting face-to-face, making phone calls and texting.

But Wednesday night, the numbers did not appear to be on their side. There can only be 21 Republican "no" votes. 

President Trump is playing coy on what’s next if the bill doesn’t pass. 

Also Wednesday, a major development was made in the president’s wiretapping accusations. 

House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes said it’s possible President Trump’s personal communications were picked up through, "incidental collection," during government surveillance after the November election.

"We don’t know exactly how that was picked up, but we’re trying to get to the bottom of it," he said.

But Representative Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence panel, lashed out at his colleague for sharing the information with the White House before doing so with him or the committee itself.

"We can’t conduct a credible investigation this way. And the chairman really has to make a decision about whether that’s his intention and that’s what he wants to do, or whether he’s still acting as a surrogate for the president. But he can’t do both, particularly when the allegations involve the president’s own campaign," Schiff said. 

But the chairman fired back at the Democrat criticism.

"I’m the chairman of the Intelligence Committee. It concerned me enough to have to notify the president because it was him and his transition team that were involved in this and he needs to be able to see those reports. These were intelligence reports that were widely disseminated. It’s not fair for him not to know what’s in these reports while the past administration and many agencies do know.  And so, you know look, I think you know I’m a fair guy and I’ll continue to conduct this investigation as I see fit and I’ll try to make it as fair as possible," Nunes said. 

As for Thursday’s healthcare vote, even if it passes the House, the bill’s fate is uncertain in the Senate. 

A number of Republican senators have already spoken out against the House’s version. 

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