House Republican leaders moved Tuesday to link Obamacare to voters' lingering anxieties over the economy, charging that the implementation of the law is hampering job creation and forcing already-struggling Americans to choose between food and Christmas gifts.
Republicans have signaled for weeks their intent to move beyond criticism of healthcare.gov, the Affordable Care Act's federal online insurance marketplace, and focus on additional myriad looming problems with President Obama's signature health care reforms. GOP leaders said the website remains dangerously flawed and error-prone, but emphasized at their weekly news conference that the problems with Obamacare run far deeper than the technical glitches plaguing the website.
Obamacare, Republicans said, is a pocketbook killer that is threatening Americans' access to quality, affordable health insurance.
“The president's health care law continues to wreak havoc on American families, small businesses and our economy. And it's not just a broken website. This bill is fundamentally flawed,” House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said.
“This year, [Americans] sitting around the table thinking, what do we do for Christmas, because they just got their [Obamacare] cancellation notice,” added Rep. Kay Granger, R-Texas.
Meanwhile, Boehner said he remained hopeful that the Republican House and Democratic Senate would reach agreements on the farm bill, the federal budget and other legislation before Congress adjourns for the year. The speaker blamed the slow progress on Senate Democrats, who he said refuse to compromise.
House and Senate Democrats, in turn, blamed Republicans for delaying the farm bill, accusing the GOP-led House as a “do nothing” chamber. In a tweet, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., gave House Republicans a failing grade for legislative productivity.