In what would be a dramatic change of course, House Republican leaders are considering a strategy of risking a government shutdown at the end of this month if Obamacare isn’t defunded.In the weekly conference meeting Wednesday morning, GOP leaders intend to propose a continuing resolution to keep the federal funded beyond Sept. 30 but strip out funding for Obamacare. The move was first reported by the conservative National Review.
Senior Republicans know the strategy is a nonstarter in the Democratic-led Senate, and for months have wanted to avoid a shutdown confrontation over Obamacare. The latest move is a tacit admission from leaders that they have, for the moment at least, been defeated by conservatives who are eager to eliminate the health care law at all costs. When the House bill fails in the Senate, as it is certain to do, House GOP leaders would then try to pass a “clean” continuing resolution that funds the government but leaves Obamacare alone. The prospects of a clean stopgap bill winning over most House Republicans are also remote.
“No decisions have been made, or will be made, until House Republican Members meet and talk tomorrow,” said House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-OH) spokesman Michael Steel.
So let me see if I have this right: Mr. Boehner is going to let the nutsery win on this even though they all know that it will be as meaningful as the forty-plus prior attempts at repealing Obamacare and will get about as far, but for kickers they’re willing to shut down the government because it’s worked so well in the past. Ask President Gingrich.
“Breathtakingly juvenile” doesn’t really even begin to cover it.
President Obama has said he won’t negotiate on the debt ceiling. Now the Republicans have painted themselves into a corner thanks to their own infighting between the Tea Partiers who hate everything that has anything to do with the president and the comparatively reasonable leadership who realize that blowing a hole in the side of the ship below the waterline won’t drain the bilge. Now it’s coming down to seeing who’s bluffing and who will cave first.