No question here, the best answer is repeal. As an adviser to small business owners and investors, I can tell you that Obamacare is bad economics and a job killer, never mind a tangled implementation disaster. This is even before the fact that Americans will be stuck with an ill-considered health system monster. Once all this is said, the question becomes how to attack. Here, National Review reports that there are many options for attacking Obamacare.
Not surprisingly, the GOP appears somewhat divided on strategy. Republican Senators Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, and Marco Rubio are leading an effort to oppose any resolution to fund the government in fiscal year 2014 that includes funding to implement Obamacare. “If the administration will not enforce the law as written, then the American people should not be forced to fund it,” they wrote in a letter to Senate majority leader Harry Reid, in reference to President Obama’s decision to unilaterally delay implementation of the law’s coverage mandate for employers with more than 50 employees. So far, 13 GOP senators have signed on, along with a number of conservative groups, such as FreedomWorks and Jim DeMint’s Heritage Foundation, which plans to embark on a “Defund Obamacare Town Hall Tour” later this month.
The movement has its fair share of Republican critics. Senator Tom Coburn hascalled it “dishonest,” and “a good way for Republicans to lose the House.” Senator Richard Burr said it was “the dumbest idea I’ve ever heard.” GOP strategist Karl Rove has urged Republicans to “resist a game of chicken with the president” over Obamacare and the continuing resolution to fund the government, which is set to expire at the end of September. House majority leader Eric Cantor recently threw cold water on the proposed strategy, telling National Review Online that while “repealing Obamacare remains the goal,” defunding the law is off the table because it is unlikely to win 60 votes in the Senate.
A conservative coalition led by Americans for Tax Reform president Grover Norquist has proposed an alternative position, urging congressional leaders to demand “at minimum” a one-year delay of all 2014 Obamacare provisions as part of any budget deal. The two plans are not necessarily incompatible, Norquist argues. “Defunding the whole thing is a fine proposal, and they should have that vote, but more likely what we can get is a delay for one year,” he tells me.