The Tea Party worked hard to give Republicans a majority in the U.S. House and a larger caucus in the U.S. Senate in 2010. How did DC Republicans repay this small-government grassroots movement? They worked with BarryO to raise the federal debt ceiling. They also helped extend a payroll tax cut — taking away revenue from the sole funding source for Social Security, right as a record number of retirees are qualifying for that benefit. It ‘s hard to blame leftist Democrats for spending a lot of money we don’t have when you are aiding and abetting it.
Now, it appears the DC Republicans are sabotaging efforts to attack and cripple ObamaCare — even though a great majority of Americans want it DEAD and GONE. Erick Erickson laid the story out nicely on his blog RedState:
On Thursday, the Senate will consider Senator Roy Blunt’s amendment to the Senate version of the highway bill. It is the only amendment the Senate GOP will offer up.
On its surface, it is a good amendment. It will allow religious employers to opt out of the new Obamacare mandate on contraception and abortifacient drugs. But strategically, it is another lame effort by Senator Mitch McConnell to let Senate Democrats in swing states absolve themselves of any blame for what Barack Obama has done.
See, the highway bill probably is not going to pass. So Senator Blunt’s amendment won’t actually pass. But Senate Democrats can vote for it and then claim in their 2012 election that they too oppose the President, but alas their measure failed. At the same time, no outside groups want a vote right now. If there is a vote this week and the bill ultimately dies, the issue goes away in the press and Christian groups are only now whipping up opposition to the HHS regulation. Roy Blunt’s amendment comes too soon and takes off the table an issue social conservatives care about just as Republican leaders are whispering that the issue hurts them (coincidence?).
Of course, the Blunt Amendment got killed in the Senate. Read on:
Consider the alternative. There is another amendment Senator McConnell expressly refuses to bring up this week as an alternative — an amendment by Senator Jim DeMint for full repeal of Obamacare.
“Wait,” you say, “It’d never pass.” True. But neither with Roy Blunt’s. The difference is that Roy Blunt’s gives the Democrats cover to say they oppose the President without actually opposing the President and Jim DeMint’s amendment puts many swing state Democrats in the awkward position of either reminding voters of their support of Obamacare or suddenly flipping their support to try to save their political skin.
Oh, and as a bonus, with more polling out showing a majority of Americans still oppose the individual mandate, it is a great reminder of who is on the right side of history.
But then Mitch McConnell has a history of being a bad strategist while claiming to be the Darth Vader of Senate strategists. Of course, Darth Vader did lose the Death Star twice to a rag tag group of rebels, so I guess it kind of fits.
Erickson also points out how GOP presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney has not been so good on ObamaCare:
Had Michigan not been as close, the Democrats would have waited to spring this on us in the general election. Luckily we have it now and I hope Ohio voters are paying attention.
In July 2009, Mitt Romney wrote an op-ed in USA Today urging Barack Obama to use an individual mandate at the national level to control healthcare costs.
On the campaign trail now, Mitt Romney says the individual mandate is appropriate for Massachusetts, but not the nation. Repeatedly in debates, Romney has said he opposes a national individual mandate.
But back in 2009, as Barack Obama was formulating his healthcare vision for the country, Mitt Romney encouraged him publicly to use an individual mandate. In his op-ed, Governor Romney suggested that the federal government learn from Massachusetts how to make healthcare available for all. One of those things was “Using tax penalties, as we did, or tax credits, as others have proposed, encourages “free riders” to take responsibility for themselves rather than pass their medical costs on to others.”
Friends, if Mitt Romney is the nominee, we will be unable to fight Obama on an issue that 60% of Americans agree with us on.
As I mentioned yesterday, back in 2009 Mitt Romney took to the pages of USA Today to tell President Obama that as he came up with a healthcare plan he should consider using “tax penalties” as Massachusetts did or “tax credits, as others have proposed” to help cover the costs of health care.
The “tax penalties” is Mitt Romney’s individual mandate, a key portion the Obama Administration has credited all along as having been embraced in Obamacare.
Since pointing out yesterday that, in his own words, Mitt Romney supported a national individual mandate, his supporters have gone totally insane on twitter fully denying and trying to spin their way out of this story. Despite Romney’s own words in his editorial, Mitt Romney’s supporters are denying Romney’s own words.
But Romney did not just write an op-ed. He went on Meet the Press too. You can hear Mitt Romney on Meet the Press recommend the President take one of two approaches in formulating health care.
The first approach Romney suggests is Romneycare, which Mitt Romney now claims was never intended to be a model for the nation.
The second approach Romney suggests is the Wyden-Bennett health reform measure then pending in the United States Senate. Wyden-Bennett, like Romneycare, contained an individual mandate.
In other words, skipping the diplomatic phrasing of some, Mitt Romney lies each time he says he never supported a national individual mandate.
Folks, our work is far from over. Saving our country involves more than tossing Democrats out of power. It also involves holding elected Republican feet to the fire. Principled conservatism worked well when Ronald Reagan pushed it. We had unprecedented economic growth. Senator Jesse Helms got five terms in the U.S. Senate and helped kill off or modify some very bad bills and policies. Cutting back government, cutting taxes, and NOT “getting something done” has proven to be a fiscal and economic winner EVERY time.