Potential Biden opponent Tim Ryan tells House Democrats that vice-president offered up solution during private discussion this week, which gave team confidence on behalf of presidential ticket
The Democratic vice-presidential candidate Joseph Biden told House Democrats privately that he needed the Glasgow summit to be a success before he gave the party guidance on whether a bipartisan agreement could be reached on restoring the embattled health insurance program known as Obamacare, according to the frontrunner for the party’s nomination for the House of Representatives.
In response to a question about Biden’s remarks at a private party that the vice-president’s team was “still working” on a deal to reinstate the 14th amendment – one that nullifies state laws withholding support for Obamacare – Tim Ryan, the party’s challenger for the vacant congressional seat in northeast Ohio that includes Cincinnati, cited Biden as his source of confidence on the healthcare issue.
“Of course I’m going to be listening for guidance from the vice-president. I need this,” Ryan said at a press conference at the Democratic party’s national convention on Tuesday in Philadelphia.
Ryan also described the 28th amendment as “crucial” to the health insurance program, which provides subsidies to some low-income families who seek insurance from health insurance exchanges. The program provides subsidies to about 2.7 million people, according to state officials.
Ryan’s colleague, Representative Zoe Lofgren, a California Democrat, also nodded to Biden’s comments on the Glasgow talks while discussing the ticket’s outreach efforts in her home state.
“He (Biden) did say it was more complicated than he thought it was going to be,” Lofgren told the Guardian on Monday in Philadelphia. “I certainly have confidence in the vice-president and have for years.”
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Prior to the pivotal Philadelphia, Biden visited the home districts of some of the most vulnerable Democrats facing Republican challenges in November, delivering a message of health-care security as well as trade and economic issues.
Biden’s efforts in the Buckeye State have led to some debate about what the Democratic vice-presidential nominee’s home state of Delaware’s longstanding opposition to Obamacare might mean for future legislation. The campaign of the Republican contender for Delaware’s open seat, Lawrence Miller, has seized on that to suggest that a Democratic win would leave Delaware “more vulnerable to Obamacare, less vulnerable to American job growth and trade deals”.
Biden, for his part, has been unrelenting in praising the Affordable Care Act, and touting the benefits it is having to more than 20 million Americans.
Many inside the Clinton campaign believe that once Biden officially accepts the vice-presidential nomination he will be intent on bringing Democratic eyes to the Democratic primary to focus on the health insurance program’s consumer protections.
A campaign official told the Guardian that the Cleveland meeting did include discussions about the consequences of failing to restore the 14th amendment, but the official added that there is no indication “that that will end up being a dealbreaker” for Biden.