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The GOP’s Next Strategy to Fight Obamacare

The repeal or defund caucus readies for another go, but the replace caucus has ammo for their strategy moving forward.

by
Bill Straub

Bio

October 24, 2013 - 12:02 am
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WASHINGTON – Still sore after the whipping administered by President Obama and Senate Democrats over the government shutdown, congressional Republicans nonetheless insist they remain committed to shutting down the Affordable Care Act.

House Republicans, especially those with ties to the Tea Party, targeted what is popularly known as Obamacare from the outset of the raucous debate, refusing to support a temporary funding measure to carry the government beyond the federal fiscal year that began on Oct. 1 unless the healthcare law was defunded.

That effort famously went up in flames when lawmakers finally embraced a settlement that reopened the doors after a little more than two weeks without killing Obamacare. Now a question is plaguing a divided GOP caucus – how does the party accomplish the commonly held objective of bringing the ACA to a quick and bloody end since the Senate as presently composed would never go along? And, even if the upper chamber agreed, the president would issue a quick veto that could never gain the votes to be overturned.

In addition, Republicans must find some way to recover from the perception that the showdown over the shutdown was their Battle of the Bulge in the Obamacare fight – that last great shot at victory.

“This is our last chance and our last best chance to do something about this,” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said back in July.

But those long odds aren’t stopping congressional Republicans, particularly conservatives, from ramping up the fight. Some, like Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), argue that the law’s bitter critics will do whatever it takes.

Cruz said he is “optimistic” about the ultimate death of Obamacare.

“I am inspired by the millions of Americans who have risen up,” he said. “And if the American people continue to rise up, I am confident that in time the U.S. Senate will follow the lead of the House of Representatives and listen to the American people. That is our job. That is our responsibility.”

A public revolt, he said, will “turn this around.”

“We’re going to restore jobs, we’re going to restore economic growth, we’re going to restore the ability of people struggling to climb the ladder and achieve the American dream and we’re going to stop the number-one job killer in this country that is Obamacare,” he promised.

Appearing a convention of the Texas Medical Association in Austin on Saturday, Cruz said the cause was lost because “Senate Republicans declined to unify and declined to support House Republicans” in repealing the law. He remains “hopeful that in the future the Senate will listen.”

Cruz has not ruled out navigating toward another governmental shutdown to push the issue when the current continuing resolution expires on Jan. 15. But apparently he will have to maneuver around Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, of Kentucky, if he intends to do so.

Like Cruz, McConnell wants to kill Obamacare.

“This law is ravaging our economy, killing jobs, driving up premiums, and driving people off the health care plans they have and like, in droves,” McConnell said. “Its disastrous rollout is sign of even worse things to come. And the Democrat refusal to delay it reflects a stubborn ideological obsession that will do untold damage to our country. And Republicans remain determined to repeal this terrible law.”

But they will have to accomplish that, he said, without closing the government a second time. Appearing on Face the Nation on Sunday, McConnell said, “There will not be another government shutdown — you can count on that.”

“A number of us were saying back in July that this strategy could not and would not work,” McConnell said. “And of course it didn’t.”

McConnell acknowledged that Senate Republicans “have a math problem” when it comes to getting rid of Obamacare.

“It’s the following math problem — 55 Democrats and 45 Republicans,” he said. “We only control a portion of the government, and so that limits our ability to get rid of this horrible law.”

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) concurs with McConnell, asserting that another government shutdown could prove disastrous.

“Every one of us has voted against Obamacare repeatedly,” Alexander said of Republicans. “Every one of us would vote to repeal it. But in my view the right tactic is not to shut down the government. It won’t work – Obamacare would just keep going and we would have shut down the government.”

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
The GOP Establishment insists that the only course of action to end Caesarcare is to elect more Republicans ... and will not support any other course of action.

This is beginning to go beyond blind faith in politics-as-usual. Sounds awfully self-serving to me ... in fact, it smacks of extortion.

Especially given how Democrats went around the rules, twisted arms, and bought votes to get this lipstick-smeared pig of a law to pass.

For the GOP Establishment, is it more important to advance the virtual-reality game of politics than it is to stand on sound principle?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"It includes providing governors with more flexibility in operating state Medicaid programs, strengthening workplace wellness programs, permitting small businesses to pool their resources and ......."

Blah, blah, more big government, blah, blah.... Why can't these republican nimrods get it? Just shut down obamacare and leave us alone! We don't need some frigging big government program, to replace a big government program. This is exactly the kind of talk that confirms my contention, that the current republican "leadership" only opposes obamacare, because they aren't the ones in charge of it. If they had their way, we'd be stuck with "republicare", and it would be just as big a disaster.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Given the choice between a leader (Ted Cruz) who actually fights hard against Democrat outcomes and specifically fights to stop funding of Obamacare and a leader (Mitch McConnell) who doesn't ever fight but like to stage phony symbolic votes that have no impact, I will follow Ted Cruz. We are now five years into Obamacare and the Republicans who have power in Congress, have fully funded it every step of the way, choosing not to use their Constitutionally granted power. And so a law that is hugely unpopular and is destroying the American economy and American freedom is allowed to continue year after year, while Mitch McConnell and Lamar Alexander do absolutely nothing to fight it.

I am sick to death of being lead by losers like McConnell and Boehner. I will not follow them one step further. But I will do all I can to support Ted Cruz, financially and by supporting his cause, because he is willing to actually put his actions behind his words. And also, when I see John McCain fighting against Ted Cruz, I know I am on the right side.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (44)
All Comments   (44)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
The Republican Party has Rino-Virus. The Tea Party pledges to eradicate this fatal, debilitating illness next election.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
We don't need to elect more Republicans. We need to elect more conservatives who are willing to put the country's future ahead of their own political future.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Primary more Republicans. Elect more Tea Party Republicans. That's a winning strategy for voters.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The 7 Republican Senators Most Vulnerable to a Primary
http://atr.rollcall.com/the-7-republican-senators-most-vulnerable-to-a-primary/
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"Like Cruz, McConnell wants to kill Obamacare."

I judge a man by what he does, not what he says he wants to do. McConnell is supporting Obamacare by what he does. Ted Cruz is actually doing something to raise awareness and oppose it. Who is running against McConnell again?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Regardless of whom we support, Commander Zero is already hitting us with the cudgel of the next assault on the GOP: immigration. As far as he is concerned, 0care will "take care of itself" and no one in the slimestream media will criticize him on that subject, NO MATTER WHAT! So, look out for the next hammer. Could we, perhaps, be a little bit better prepared this time??? Probably too much to ask.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Why doesn't the GOP just use laws to shut down obamacare?
Obamacare came from SCOTUS Constitutional as a tax. All new taxation must originate in the House which obamacare did not.
Why not just take the closing of obamacare to the courts?
If it's a tax, it's illegal. If it's a penalty, it's unconstitutional.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
When individuals/businesses are hit with the tax, especially if they cannot sign up for the exchanges, then a class action lawsuit can be initiated. Which was/is Roberts' plan from the beginning. He stated as clearly as he could that it is OUR choice to limit government, not his as one justice, even Head of the USSC.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
OK, DC Republicans. Find a replacement plan you can agree on and make that the platform. Pound on it until the Dems come to the table. Every horror story should be met with a demand to replace the mess. Simple repeal is not going to happen. Do some politics and freeze Obama out of the process just like he chose to be frozen out the last time.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
If their next strategy involves any more Republican self-immolations on the Capitol steps, count me out.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Well, if they were REAL self-immolations ...
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"...how does the party accomplish the commonly held objective of bringing the ACA to a quick and bloody end since the Senate as presently composed would never go along? And, even if the upper chamber agreed, the president would issue a quick veto that could never gain the votes to be overturned."
They can't. We're @#$%ed. The socialists have won. Here comes communism...

In the meantime, I'm voting third-party as a stance against the RINOs that have taken over.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The DNC should give out plaques ...
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
What? You missed the curtain raisers in Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid? More like, here is Communism to stay. Who'd a thunk the victors of the Cold War would decide the only problem with Communism was the Russians were the wrong people to make it work!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
In hindsight Cruz and Lee were right, and the media attack dogs for B.O. were once more shown to be biased, wrong and not media but propaganda.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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