From: Benning, Tom [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Monday, July 17, 2017 4:31 PM
Subject: pool report #3 -- Trump health care comments
Going a little out of order here to get you POTUS' comments on health care, which came as part of a 13-minute speech in the East Room. (I'll have more on that speech and the inside part of the Made in America tour in a moment.)
Trump got his loudest applause in the East Room when he said "we must repeal job-killing Obamacare." And he was quick to add that he hopes Sen. John McCain "gets better very soon" from the surgery he had to remove a blood clot.
"Because we miss him. He's a crusty voice in Washington," Trump said, before referring the fact that the health care vote is delayed while McCain remains back in Arizona. "Plus, we need his vote."
The president said multiple times that McCain would be back -- "sooner than somebody else would be back." But he also stressed that "we need that vote" -- "and we need a number of votes because we have to repeal Obamacare."
Trump said Republicans would replace the health care law with "something that is going to be outstanding." "Far, far better than failing Obamacare," he said. He blasted Obamacare by saying that "every single element of it is bad."
"We're going to get that done," he said. "And I think we're going to surprise a lot of people."
The president said that Republicans are "pushing very hard" and that the "Republican senators are great people." But he explained that "some states need this, some states need that."
"But we're getting it together," he said. "And it's going to happen."
Trump then turned to Vice President Mike Pence, who had introduced him.
"Right, Mike?" he said.
Pence responded, "Yessir."