For eight years, over the course of the entire Obama presidency, the GOP campaigned on a full repeal of Obamacare. It worked.
2016 has come and gone and people with the letter R next to their name are in charge of Congress and the White House.
You would think, therefore, the repeal of Obamacare would be at the center of their minds now that they’re in power. And it is – kinda.
The Trump administration’s attempt to tackle healthcare has been a nightmare. They failed the first time in the house. The second time in the house (when it passed) it did so contentiously. And now as the latest version of the bill has been revealed in the senate 5 GOP senators – 3 of which are needed to pass the bill – have already come out saying they refuse to support it as is.
The reason for this absurd rush to take care of a clearly complicated issue is simple. The Republicans want to be able to say that they repealed and replaced (the very unpopular) Obamacare when they run in next year’s midterm elections.
But here is the issue, and make no mistake about it, this bill does not repeal nor replace Obamacare.
Premiums are still going to be high, there still won’t be interstate competition, and Planned Parenthood is only defunded for one year (so that they can use it as a 2018 campaign boost, of course.)
And despite the lack of change to what many have deemed “Obamacare-light” the GOP still hasn’t been able to get even the most moderate of Democrats on board to counterbalance the Tea Party conservatives who just won’t get on board with this legislation.
So you see, the establishment GOP is playing politics with healthcare so that they can campaign on the fact that they “defunded” Planned Parenthood and replaced Obamacare. But what is really going to happen when they start campaigning in the very near future?
Well if they fail to pass this legislation the Republicans will look like the inefficient party who can’t even get things done Despite majority control.
Alternatively, if it does pass, the GOP can no longer continue to blame the healthcare catastrophe on Obama, Republicans will be the responsible party. Democrats will campaign on the Republican bill just as conservatives campaigned on Obamacare. And it will work for them just as it worked for us. The reason? Just like their bill sucked, this one isn’t great either. Republicans are, potentially, giving up seats.
When the Republican healthcare legislation is found to be ineffective by the people, Republicans are not going to be able to spew the talking points they are dying for in the repeal and defunding of PP. They will be too busy defending their version of the bill, saying it is a better alternative even though it still needs work. Does that sound familiar? Of course it does! Democrats have been saying the same thing about the ACA for 8 years!
In this manner, the Republicans are playing politics and they aren’t even playing it well. The case could have been made that they should have tried to pass this right before the elections so that they can use the talking points of a repeal before the American people have the ability to realize the detriments of it. But if passed now, the voters will have ample time to suffer the consequences of this law.
If Republicans were smart, they would play the political game as follows.
The Democrats have made it clear that no matter what the Republicans do with this particular issue – they will serve as obstructionists. It seems that any alteration to Obamacare automatically means that they will, in full, oppose the bill.
Once that is the case, why wouldn’t Republican lawmakers make a Conservative bill that even the Tea Party can get behind so that they can actually pass it? Not only will they be able to have the “repeal and replace” under their belts for the elections but their base of voters will actually be happy with the legislation. The current bill will anger their base for no reason while failing to get the votes. Whereas, a conservative bill will electrify the base, potentially pass, and be a usable campaign theme in 2018.
But unfortunately, this isn’t the only time this month Republicans are learning from the failing tactics of their Democratic counterparts. In fact, if you turn on the news, the two main debates the past couple of weeks have been healthcare and free-speech issues.
The latter is because a few members of the alt-Right have taken on Leftist tactics in protesting a show where Trump is depicted as Julius Caesar who is assassinated toward the end of the play. The rationale of these protesters, is that, they care more about winning then they do about principles. But these “winning at all cost” personalities seem to have only started following politics in the age of Trump, where doing so helps you earn fame and twitter followers.
If they had been paying attention they would have realized what I have been saying all along. When Conservatives stand on principle, Conservatives win. The Republican Party has been winning since the Obama election because of our principles and because of our commitment to get rid of Obamacare.
If the Right decides to turn into the Left for the sake of playing politics or for the sake of a few extra clicks on the internet they will get themselves hated, just as the Left got themselves hated.
This seems like pretty simple stuff. Conservatives better hope that the party gets their act together, or they risk losing what they have spent the last 8 years winning.