There has been a 30-point drop in the probability that the individual mandate will be repealed by April 30. The current estimate is a 35 percent chance. As I noted a month ago, the 65 percent figure was about equal to Chris Webber’s free-throw percentage in the NBA. The new estimate is a little lower than the worst free-throw percentage in NBA history, that of Andre Drummond.
Of course, to advocates of the ACA, even a 1-in-3 chance may be “too high,” which is why continued efforts to be “up in grills” are planned for the coming congressional recess.
Nevertheless, the shift in the forecast is a large one, reflecting the challenges of agreeing on an alternative to the ACA and moving it through the labyrinthine legislative process while simultaneously having to spend substantial time confirming Trump’s Cabinet nominees. As Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.) put it: “There seems to be a coalescing around principles; I don’t think it’s gotten deep in the weeds about what it will actually include yet.”
Republicans have been running on the repeal of Obamacare for six years. They have had ample time to have a road map ready to get this done. If they fail to keep their promise, I guarantee that Trump will have a Democratic Senate in 2019 – and probably a Democratic House too.