Paul Ryan needs to step down as Speaker of the House.
The reason? He failed to deliver the votes on his health care bill. The one trumpeted to repeal and replace ObamaCare. The one that he had seven years to work on. The one he hid under lock and key in the basement of Congress. The one that had to be pulled to prevent the embarrassment of not having enough votes to pass.
But this bill didn't just fail -- it failed when Republicans had the House, the Senate, the White House.
And the timing? It failed within the first 70 days of President Donald Trump's administration. A president who made replacement of ObamaCare the hallmark of his campaign. And then used valuable political capital to accomplish it.
Americans elected the one man they believed could do it. A complete outsider. Someone beholden to no one -- but them.
And Speaker Ryan, you come in, with all your swagger and experience, and you sell him a bill of goods which ends up a complete and total failure. And you allow our president, in his first one hundred days, to come out of the box like that? Based on what? Your legislative expertise? Your knowledge of the arcane ins and outs of the bill writing process? Your relationships? What? Your drinks at the Hay-Adams with your pals?
Folks, I want to be clear: this is NOT on President Trump. No one expected a businessman to completely understand the nuances, the complicated ins and outs of Washington and its legislative process. How would he know which individuals upon whom he would be able to rely? Many of them, friends and establishment colleagues of Speaker Ryan.
You, on the other hand, Speaker Ryan, know very well who the 15 hard liners, the 10 moderates, and all the other ones.
YOU, of course, know their demands. And if you didn't, why didn't you? Some actually shut down the government over ObamaCare and you couldn't figure out what you needed to do to get their support?
You knew no Democrat was going to support it and that you would have to rely upon the Republicans. How could you possibly misjudge this?
And where was your whip [Louisiana Rep.] Steve Scalise in all of this? How tough a lift was this? And why start with this if you are not sure you've got the votes?
Now, I certainly haven't spoken with the president about any of this. But I can only imagine that he and his aides took on health care because they believed you had his back. And you didn't. You didn't even test the waters. You had no consensus.
I hate it when Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi get to beat their drums and talk about what a great day it is for America that President Trump failed -- when even they know ObamaCare is a total disaster.
The president on the other hand is handling this with dignity and he does not seem to want to criticize you. Saying this [when questioned about it]:
“I want to thank Paul Ryan. He worked very, very hard. I will tell you that.”
Mr. President, all reports are that you wanted to handle the tax cuts first but that Ryan convinced you to go with health care.
If that’s the case, not only has he hurt you with his health care debacle but the ripples will hurt you as you try to overhaul the tax code will come back at you.
The Freedom Caucus, feeling emboldened by their win with this health care failure, will now dig their heels in on the tax cuts.
Ryan has hurt you going forward and he’s to go.
The shame of this is that, in addition to putting your faith in someone who didn't have your back, you made the decision, as opposed to letting ObamaCare explode -- as it inevitably will -- you decided to take it on anyway.
In January you said this:
“Give it two years, it’s going to explode like you’ve never seen it. Nobody’s going to be able to afford it. It’s a disaster. And that’s politically what we should do. But we don’t want to do that. We want to get something done and get it done right.”
I never put my faith in you, [Speaker] Ryan. I questioned you all through the campaign when you distanced yourself from candidate Trump whenever you felt the prevailing winds blowing against Trump. To me, your loyalty was always in question.
Yet what was never in question, to me, was your intelligence, your savvy, and your comprehension of the system.
So why? Why would you let this happen? What was your agenda?
The reason, Speaker Ryan, that you, and all your Washington colleagues, are held in such low esteem is because you have forgotten about us.
In spite of the fact that you RINOS were all working against him though, the president joined with you and relied on you. Trusting you. Believing you had his back. You didnt.
The American people won't forget this and neither should the president.
Adapted from Judge Jeanine Pirro's "Opening Statement" on March 25.
Jeanine Pirro joined the Fox News Channel (FNC) in 2006 and currently serves as a legal analyst as well as the host of "Justice with Judge Jeanine," a weekend prime-time program (Saturday, 9 p.m. ET) that presents her legal insights on the news of the week, current high profile cases, as well as recent issues and trends in the world of crime and justice. Click here for more information on Jeanine Pirro.