It’s looking like Republicans are going to be seeking reconciliation with President Obama. Is That a Bad Thing? Actually, it’s not just a good thing, it may be the very best thing Republicans can do.
Rep. John Fleming, R-LA, is leading the charge to make sure the House and Senate can seek reconciliation with the President. He’s hoping for the most positive reconciliation possible.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell seems to be in favor of reconciliation as well. And that brings up the obvious question, “Can anything Mitch supports be good???
We’ll let you be the judge and here’s a hint. “Reconciliation” may not mean just exactly what you think it does.
Reconciliation is a budget tool that, if successful, would severely limit the scope and functionality of the Affordable Care Act.
When a reconciliation bill goes before the Senate, it cannot be filibustered, and just 51 votes—a majority—are needed to advance and pass the legislation.
Democrats used the move in 2009 when Congress voted on the Affordable Care Act. Now, almost six years later, Republicans are debating whether to employ the same tactic to push back against the health care law.
In other words, they’ll embed the repeal of ObamaCare into the budget and let the President threaten a veto. Rep. Fleming has written to Speaker Boehner on the strategy.
“Mr. Speaker, our constituents are hurting from the consequences of Obamacare, and we urge you to include reconciliation instructions that will repeal all reconcilable aspects of Obamacare in the fiscal year 2016 budget resolution,” he said in a letter addressed to Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., signaled last October he’d be open to using reconciliation to repeal Obamacare with 51 votes. Republicans currently control 54 seats in the U.S. Senate.
There are four questions related to this strategy. First is, will any Democrats support the death by reconciliation of ObamaCare? The answer is almost certainly “no.” At least not the first time around. They will stand with, or is that kneel before, their President.
Second question? Will all Republicans support death by reconciliation? Probably, at least the first time around. Even Lindsay Graham, potential Presidential candidate next year who is going to vote to accept Loretta Lynch as AG, will support reconciliation in round one.
Third question? Will Obama veto the budget? We’ll answer this with another question. Does it get hot in July in Phoenix?
And now, drum roll please, will House and Senate Republicans cave at the thought of a government shutdown because there’s no budget? Well, the obvious answer is “like an old mine shaft that’s been hit with a ton of TNT.”
Needless to say, this is going to be an interesting year. House and Senate Conservatives vs Obama/Major Media/Establishment Republicans.
At the very least, we’ll have some good primary targets for 2016.