President Donald Trump “clearly” wants a health care bill with “heart,” White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Tuesday.
Days after telling Republican senators that the House’s American Health Care Act was “mean,” the president reportedly told tech leaders on Monday that the Senate’s version needs “more heart,” an ambiguous comment Spicer was asked to clarify on Tuesday.
“I mean, the president clearly wants a bill that has heart in it,” Spicer said. “He believes that health care is something that is near and dear to so many families and individuals. He made it clear from the beginning that that was one of his priorities, and as the Senate works its way through this bill, as the House did, any ideas are welcome to strengthen it, to make it more affordable, more accessible and deliver the care that it needs.”
Spicer added that health care is an area Trump is passionate about. “He understands the role that health care plays in so many people’s lives and their families, and he wants to make sure that we do everything we can to provide the best option for them as Obamacare continues to fail,” he continued.
Asked specifically what part of the Senate’s bill Trump takes issue with, Spicer pointed to the “ongoing discussion” Trump has had with senators.
“I’m not gonna get into the private discussions that have occurred,” he said. “But I will just say that the more that we can do to produce a bill as it works its way through the process, that achieves the president’s goals, I think that’s something that we can all agree on.”
The text of the Senate bill could be made public for the first time on Thursday, giving senators roughly a week to review the text before a floor vote. Democrats have hammered their GOP colleagues for what they’ve said is a secretive process that keeps Americans and even some Republican lawmakers in the dark.