Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., joined Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., this weekend in denouncing any attempt to alter Obamacare during the upcoming continuing resolution fight. “We should not be closing down the government under any circumstances. That doesn’t work; it’s wrong,” King told CNN’s Candy Crowley.
Coburn seemed equally determined to avoid a government shutdown at any cost. “Among that group of senators that has been considering this, I was the only one who was here for that,” Coburn told the Washington Examiner‘s Byron York in reference to the 1995 and 1996 government shutdowns. “The president is never going to sign a bill defunding Obamacare. Do you think he’s going to cave?”
What else is Coburn willing to cave on?
But Coburn seems to be unaware that Obama has also signaled he will veto any bill that does not end the sequestration spending cuts that have slowed government spending across the federal government. If Coburn, McCain, King and the rest of the Republican establishment are signaling they will cave without a fight on Obamacare, why should Obama expect any different from them on spending?
Obama doesn’t care what Congress does
Obama may have won re-election last November, but since then he has made drastic and unilateral changes to Obamacare; changes that fully funding the law now, would endorse. “Where Congress is unwilling to act,” Obama told The New York Times in an interview July 24, “I will take whatever administrative steps that I can in order to do right by the American people.”
So far, that has meant that Obama has unilaterally delayed enforcement of Obamacare’s employer mandate and insurance subsidy income verification requirements. Both delays are flagrantly illegal and will make it easier to get more Americans hooked on new government spending, even if significant portions of that spending is expended fraudulently. Coburn, McCain, King, and every other Republican who says they will not shutdown the government over Obamacare, is essentially telling Obama they are perfectly fine with this.
Holding Obama accountable
Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, may have overshot by asking his colleagues to sign a letter committing them to not fund a cent of Obamacare in the upcoming continuing resolution. But there are more targeted means of checking Obama’s power. Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn., has introduced legislation that would block the Obama administration from paying insurance subsidies through the Obamacare exchanges until the law’s anti-fraud measures are fully implemented.
If Republicans are not even willing to stand behind this common-sense, good-government position, they might as well all just go home, a judgement voters may also make come November 2014.
From The Washington Examiner
Editorial: Nothing at all phony about the IRS scandal
Malia Zimmerman: Honolulu could be America’s next Detroit
Tim Carney: Middle class has been left behind by Obamanomics
Susan Ferrechio: Congress to clear student loan bill, FBI director but not much else before leaving town
Susan Crabtree: Obama to plot fall strategy with Capitol Hill Dems next week
David Drucker: Mike Lee defends proposal to shut down government if Obamacare stays funded
Brian Hughes: Obama says Keystone pipeline won’t create many jobs
Joseph Lawler: Treasury Secretary Jack Lew challenges GOP over upcoming fiscal fights
Joe Gehrke: Obamacare nonprofit educates Democrats only
Ashe Schow: Bipartisan pair of senators introduce bill to extend CBO budget projections beyond 10 years
In Other News
Associated Press, Signs of Declining Economic Security: Four out of 5 U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives, a sign of deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream.
The Wall Street Journal, More Doctors Steer Clear of Medicare: Fewer American doctors are treating patients enrolled in the Medicare health program for seniors, reflecting frustration with its payment rates and pushback against mounting rules, according to health experts.
The New York Times, Momentum Builds Against N.S.A. Surveillance: The movement to significantly rein in surveillance by the National Security Agency began on the political fringes but has built up support from Republican and Democratic leaders.
USA Today, Omnicom, Publicis merge into biggest ad firm: In a move that dramatically alters the worldwide advertising landscape, marketing giants Omnicom Group and Publicis Groupe will merge to form the world’s largest advertising holding company.
Think Progress celebrates Cumulus Media’s decision not to carry Rush Limbaugh next year.
Sam Roudman reports that New York’s supposedly greenest skyscraper is actually its biggest energy hog.
Brad DeLong on Obama’s housing policy failure.
Howard Dean says Obama’s Independent Payment Advisory Board will fail.
At Red State, Rubio makes the case for defunding Obamacare.
Ross Douthat says current Republican efforts to become more libertarian will not be effective.
John Hinderaker on Obama’s sequester strategy.
James Pethokoukis on Obama’s fact-challenged inequality speech.