“Their heart was not in the healthcare battle,” said a top Republican who was in meetings with the President and his team but declined to be identified because those conversations were supposed to be private. “Think about the level of intensity on the executive orders for the travel ban, or on the wiretapping claims. He certainly checked the boxes on healthcare, to his credit. But it’s self-evident there was not a certain level of intensity devoted to this.”…
The president made it clear at rallies over the past few weeks that healthcare was just something he needed to get through, in order to move on to the next thing. “We want a very big tax cut, but cannot do that until we keep our promise to repeal and replace the disaster known as ‘Obamacare,'” he told an adoring crowd at a rally in Louisville last week.
The president also has been distracted in recent weeks by other issues, like questions about possible collusion between Russia and his campaign, the evidence-free accusation that President Barack Obama had wiretapped Trump Tower during the 2016 election and the confirmation hearing for Judge Neil Gorsuch, for his nominee to the Supreme Court.
The top Republican said that in one healthcare meeting with the president and his top aides in the Oval Office, it was a challenge to keep Trump focused on the health care vote. “Halfway through that meeting, he stopped to talk about Gorsuch,” the source said. “His mind was bouncing around. I never felt they were dialed into this.”