09.13.2013 19

Postpone Obamacare compromise the only plan that might work

tom-graves-defund-delay-obamacareBy Robert Romano

House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) would do well to embrace new legislation introduced by Rep. Tom Graves (R-Ga.) that funds the government, and defunds and delays implementation of Obamacare until 2015.

It is the only continuing resolution on the table at the moment that achieves the simultaneous goals of avoiding a government shutdown while giving the American people a reprieve from being funneled into government-run, taxpayer-funded health care.

In a statement Americans for Limited Government President Nathan Mehrens praised the legislation and asked for support: “We urge all members to cosponsor this legislation and stand firm behind Rep. Graves effort.”

The bill as drafted defunds the discretionary aspects of the health care law pursuant to the administration of the law for one year, and puts a year delay on the execution of its mandatory aspects like the Medicaid expansion and the insurance state exchange subsidies. It would keep the total current sequestration level for discretionary spending for 2014.

For Boehner and Cantor, this is likely the only plan that will keep House Republicans together on the fight over the continuing resolution. It is an eminently tenable proposition, which is that if the White House is delaying Obamacare for big business, the unions, and special interests for a year, then the American people deserve the same treatment.

It is a good deal, and an honest and fair attempt at a compromise by Graves and his 42 original legislation cosponsors. They deserve the praise of the American people for their leadership on this issue.

For members who have taken the position that they cannot support a continuing resolution that allows Obamacare to be funded, this offers an opportunity to make their voices and that of their constituents  heard. But they must be clear, postponement is not the end goal — repeal is.

Politically, the one-year delay will allow voters to render their verdict on the health care law via the 2014 midterm elections. Republicans can run on repeal, Democrats can run on keeping the law. With the employer mandate already delayed by Obama, and the state exchanges not yet ready for primetime, for all parties involved, this outcome is the best that could be hoped for considering the circumstances.

The alternative facing Boehner and Cantor is to present a continuing resolution that funds Obamacare that will tear the House Republican Conference apart, and could very well result in a government shutdown. Conservatives who have staked out a position that they cannot support a continuing resolution that funds Obamacare would be left in a tight spot.

For, if Boehner and Cantor do not embrace the plan, there will be no alternative for the pro-defund caucus. They must be prepared escalate their efforts to defeat the continuing resolution, even if it means a government shutdown.

As for Democrats, they do not like House leadership’s current proposal because it does not do away with nondefense sequestration. Boehner and Cantor may not be able to count on their support this time around to get the continuing resolution across the finish line.

To give the American people relief from Obamacare and to avert a shutdown, House Republicans will need to present a united front to the Senate and the White House. The Graves plan offers the best chance of doing that, and in the process creates the opportunity to at least slow down the implementation of Obamacare.

Overall, this will set the political stage for 2014, where members and candidates can make their case to the American people that the health care law should never be allowed to go into effect.  It is worth a shot.

Robert Romano is the senior editor of Americans for Limited Government.

  • Conservative

    After reading Mr. Romano’s article about delaying Obammacare, I’m appalled at his suggestion this is the only course of action.

    His comment;
    “Politically, the one-year delay will allow voters to render their verdict on the health care law via the 2014 midterm elections. Republicans can run on repeal, Democrats can run on keeping the law. With the employer mandate already delayed by Obama, and the state exchanges not yet ready for primetime, for all parties involved, this outcome is the best that could be hoped for considering the circumstances.”

    First, this legislation is nothing more than another ‘shell game’ for members of congress to protect their own backsides, AND, not face the wrath of the voters in the 2014 elections.
    As far as, ” all parties involved, this outcome is the best that could be hoped for considering the circumstances.”
    The parties involved are , Obama, Congress, and the American people, and guess who will get screwed in the end. Does that sound like the best outcome for ALL parties involved ?
    For ALG President Mehrens to praise this legislation is a slap in the face to all conservatives !
    The only real solution is to defund Obamacare in the CR and let the government shut down if congress so desires not to pass a CR without funding for it.
    Probably the best thing, because if government isn’t running we are not getting screwed any worse.

  • Robert J. Romano

    Here are the options actually on the table at the moment that members are actively considering in the House that I’m aware of: 1) the Graves plan described above; and 2) the Cantor proposal that funds Obamacare. And that’s it.

    Would I prefer the approach that attaches defunding language ala HR 2682 to the CR? Absolutely. That’s the approach ALG has been advocating for weeks. But there is no such bill at the moment. H.J. Res. 62 is not ideal, but is the best plan on the table at the moment.

  • Robert J. Romano

    Also, I never said it was the only course of action. I briefly outline the fall back position if House leadership rejects the Graves approach: “if Boehner and Cantor do not embrace the plan, there will be no alternative for the pro-defund caucus. They must be prepared escalate their efforts to defeat the continuing resolution, even if it means a government shutdown.”

  • Hotnike


  • Solid_Facts

    Hey, Mr. Romano! What’s wrong with shutting down the government? When Clinton shut down the government, it was the best weeks of his administration. For the first time since Reagan left office, the government wasn’t wasting more of our money and nobody suffered, even the least bit. In fact, the thing that got it going again was the fact that both sides were worried that the voters would realize that they didn’t need that much government to begin with.

    In fact, I’ve got a better idea. Let’s shut the government down for the next three years. Obama has proven that he is a poor negotiator, so if Republicans refuse to pass a continuing resolution that funds Obamacare, he’ll keep the government shut down. But the great part about that is that he isn’t bright enough to realize that the longer the government is shut down, the more the voters will realize how little government services we really need and how much of their tax dollars are being wasted. A sufficiently long government shutdown could be the best thing that could happen to this nation.

    The point is that a purely symbolic win, for “win” sake is still a loss. If Republicans can’t win on conservative values, then we’ve already lost and we just don’t know it. We need to find out if this nation can still be saved of if the path to the complete destruction of our freedoms is already set. The only way for us to make that determination is for Republicans to stand up and tell liberals, with a loud voice, “NO! We are through with your one-sided compromises. We won’t go any further.” What Boehner, Cantor and Graves offer is not a workable compromise, but just Democrat Lite.

    I have notified my GOP congressman (Kevin Brady, who has a primary opponent) and both of my GOP senators that I have vowed not only to NOT vote for them, but to actively support their opponent in the next primary and in the general election, if necessary, if they vote for any continuing resolution that does not completely defund Obamacare, including cutting off discretionary spending. One of my senators has promised to do just that. His name is Ted Cruz and he’s one of only about a dozen Republicans in both houses who truly represents his constituents. Democrat Lite is not an option. Winning for “win” sake is not winning. Defund Obamacare or lose my vote forever. Fortunately, there are lots of other Republican voters out there, who feel the same way. This vote will likely be the vote that gives conservatives the wake-up call to get rid of the rest of the RINOs in Congress.

  • sreynolds

    POSTPONE NOTHING DEFUND THE DAMN THING IN IT”S ENTIRETY PERMANENTLY You have the backing of a majority of US Citizens, screw the illegals and the democrats….

  • Daniel Spickard

    What you don’t get sir, is the fact that not only republicans in this country hate Obama care, but democrats hate it as well. If we can get Obama care for individuals pushed back til 2015, we can stand a good chance of regaining control of the senate. This would mean that before it would ever become fully enacted, we could have the chance to kill it once and for all. We could also have a good chance at impeaching this whole administration, and getting our country back on the road to working again. I think that this bill is the best way to do this. Any other way would cause the “Great Obama care train wreck” which in itself will collapse the whole healthcare industry. This would mean nobody would have any healthcare at all.
    Once we can repeal Obama-care, we can go back in an dissect it, taking out the bad parts, and replacing it with something that could work.
    As it stands right now, Obama-care is going to implode within 9 months of it’s full implementation, and it’s going to take the whole healthcare industry with it. Trust me it’s going to happen. The government doesn’t have enough money to cover 80% of the American population. They can’t even take any more people with preexisting conditions. This government is going to go broke, and everybody is going to lose. Let’s give this bill a chance. It’s either that or no insurance at all. You choose!

  • Daniel Spickard

    Let me ask you this question. Are you retired? Are you disabled? Do you depend on a pay check from the government to live? I sir, was hit by a car back in 2002, I’m lucky to be alive, and I need these government payments to live. If they shut down the government, and my checks stop, I’m coming looking for you. I’m not proud to be disabled, but it is, what it is. I gave 13 years of my life in the military protecting this country from idiot like this!

  • Daniel Spickard

    Here’s another option go around your neighborhood and tell all your neighbors to refuse to buy health insurance. If we can get enough people to refuse to buy health insurance, we can kill Obama care from home, and won’t have to rely on our congress to do our work for us. If we can get 50% of all people that either don’t have health insurance right now, and those who are going to lose what they already have, and we can kill Obama-care from the bottom up. If they don’t have the money to run it, it’ll be in the water.

  • Daniel Spickard

    Well you show me one democrat that can read!

  • Daniel Spickard

    They can’t. One thing that they put into the bill was a rider that gives 50 billion dollars to get it running, and it isn’t discretionary spending. The only way to get rid of it totally is to keep it from going into effect until after the mid term elections giving republicans the chance to regain control of the senate. Then not only can we go after repealing Obama care, we can go after and impeach his whole administration.

  • rowleya


  • Conservative

    AMEN !!!

  • Kioga

    Enough of this bull, Defund and Repeal, not Deflect and Postpone ! Stop the damn government and let’s rebuild it from the ground up, smaller, term limits, job descriptions (obviously needed), Constitutional, ethical, and Allegiance oriented !
    Not the way it is, but as it should have been as originally mandated and designed before these uneducated phony and power hungry lazy idiots make it worse. There’s probably over a million pieces of crap that Congress needs to decrap and destroy that has been passed too ! If they want to keep any of it, archive it for the museum of unnatural history, but let’s get this concept of posponing, not reading, and forfiting the main reason for their existence straight ! We need some down home guts and work ethics here, America !

  • FloridaJim

    It is easy folks DEFUND OBABACARE it is a fraudulent bill passed in the dark of night unread and unwritten as the bill comes out it is worse than anyone imagined even the union slugs hate it. Defund it and start over with a workable healthcare that is private with no government interference no thousands of employees spying on us, no ACORN fools being paid under the table as Navigators this bill reeks as much as Obama. His every policy smells like Chicago.

  • WhiteFalcon

    How about legislation to the effect that either everyone in on Ovomitcare, including all Government members and employees, and their current health insurance programs to be permanently and irretrievely terminated, or no one is on it. I think that would effectively shut it down.

  • johnq

    How is this an “honest and fair attempt at compromise” if the admitted purpose is the delay and eventual repeal of the law?

    Do you honestly believe the Senate and President will go along with this?

    I think you and Rep. Graves have a better chance praying and asking God or Santa for help. Try clicking your ruby slippers together maybe that will work.

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