In a move that startled the most experienced politicians in Washington, House Republicans on Saturday played their final hand concerning Obamacare’s enactment; they pushed the government to the precipice of a partial shutdown.
The House defiantly insisted that President Barack Obama delay the Affordable Care Act a year in defiance of White House and the Democratic-controlled Senate. Their reasoning for the requested delay was if corporations get that extra year so the “kinks” can be worked out in the law, why not the American people?
The rejection of the Senate bill passed Friday would have kept the government operating another 45 days, making zero changes in the highly flawed health law. The Republicans prepared to pass their own bill tossing the issue back in the laps of the Senate.
The Senate meet again 10 hours before the government shutdown is to begin. Many Senators will think long and hard before rubber-stamping a veto of the House version – especially those running for re-election in 2014.
Even if the Senate did go along with the Hose, the president says he’ll veto it.
Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell issued a statement that said in short that Republicans are not fighting a lost cause to defund Obamacare. "I don't think it was a waste of time. The American people do fully understand that still, not a single Republican in the House or Senate favors this awful new law, and if they will send us enough additional new members to get rid of it, we will."
The House bill would also repeal a tax on medical devices that helps pay for the law. The House proposal would provide the government with operating funds until December 15.
Knowing full well the Senate may very well reject the House offer, they plan to pass a companion measure Sunday directing that U.S. military troops be paid on time despite any partial shutdown.
The Senate's 54-44 vote Friday was predictably straight along party lines in favor of the bill. That proceeded a 79-19 vote to cut off a filibuster by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. All 52 Democrats, two independents and 25 of 44 Republicans voted in favor including Mitch McConnell and most of the GOP leadership.
Many think that closing down the government will severely weaken Republicans as the battle shifts in mid-October to allow the government to borrow more money, even though the debt now is more than $16 trillion.
Although most of the mainstream media neglects to report the fact that critical services such patrolling the borders, inspecting meat and controlling air traffic would continue, so would Social Security benefits, Medicare and Medicaid health care programs for the elderly and poor.
Obama and the Democrats are fully aware that the health insurance exchanges are schedule to open Tuesday, which puts them in a desperate situation to continue what is essentially an all-Democratic forced march to universal healthcare.
In the back of many Democrats up for reelection in 2014 after all the hoopla dies away is what will the American people think of them if the author of Obamacare, retiring Senator Max Backus D-MT), is right – “Obamacare is a train wreck waiting to happen.”
If you have enjoyed this column, may I suggest you scroll down this page and press the SUBSCRIBE box? It's FREE. Thank you for your patronage.
** Send your comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org