Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said Friday that President Donald Trump "just went through an experience that wasn't what he was told" with the debacle over the American Health Care Act.
"He had been told that everything was under control — that the leadership could deliver, that he didn't have to pay too much attention, come in at the very end and close the deal," Gingrich, who served in the post from 1995 to 1999, told Sean Hannity on Fox News.
"And it got to be a total mess.
"I will guarantee you if this had been one of his hotels, one of his buildings, one of his golf courses, there would be a lot of personnel changes tonight.
"What you are going to see is that he is going to rethink how he approaches the Congress, based on this outcome," Gingrich predicted. "It was so totally utterly unacceptable."
But the situation also posed a new reality for House Speaker Paul Ryan, the Wisconsin Republican who introduced AHCA earlier this month.
"Paul Ryan is at a real turning point," Gingrich told Hannity.
"Ryan is a very smart guy. Nobody should take that away from him. He knows an immense amount about policy.
"He has got to decide in the world of Trump — where you're doing really bold, really different things — is he willing to spend the time and the energy listening to everybody, even when he doesn't agree with them, doesn't think they make any sense?"
The AHCA was pulled after Trump suggested the move to Ryan amid strong opposition from both conservative Republicans and moderates, who slammed to proposal on various fronts.
"If you are going to deal with health issues, the more open and public it is," Gingrich said. "Let people talk themselves out.
"You have got a couple of committees that you can assign this to. Let them have hearings all over the country.
"Let them build a consensus that we can replace Obamacare."
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