Trump is a negotiator. Negotiations include carrots and sticks. This is one stick Trump can credibly use because he is very popular in many if these districts and can easily recruit people who are loyal to him and will advocate his brand of conservatism.
Obamacare repeal, whether you think it’s perfect or not, is a must-pass bill for Trump. If it goes down, Trump will be severely wounded, with Democrats already trying to discredit his presidency. He will do what it takes to get the bill across the finish line.
President Trump has told Republican leaders that he’s prepared to play hardball with congressional conservatives to pass the GOP healthcare bill, including by supporting the 2018 primary challengers of any Republican who votes against the bill, the Washington Examiner reported.
Sources told the Washington Examiner that Trump made that threat in a White House meeting on Tuesday with House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and other members of the House GOP whip team that helps line up votes.
Trump’s threat is one that could resonate. Most of the Republicans who oppose the GOP’s American Health Care Act represent ruby red districts that strongly support Trump and his agenda.