It is almost impossible to believe that a mere month into the new Congress, old guard Republicans led by House Speaker John Boehner are stampeding to violate key campaign pledges. We have seen the “resolute” House Republican leadership quail over the prospect of actually making a paltry $100 billion in promised spending cuts. We have seen tough talking Darrell Issa backing off desperately needed investigations of blatant Obama administration corruption and abuse of power. We have witnessed the spectacle of Speaker Boehner mindlessly complimenting Obama on his treasonous handling of Egypt, undermining Republican presidential candidates who have correctly criticized it. Now the leadership is putting up roadblocks to the only chance we may ever get to stop Obamacare.
The House is currently considering a Continuing Resolution to fund government programs for the rest of the year. A temporary CR was passed in the waning days of the 111th Congress that expires March 4th. Without a new CR the government will then shut down.
Representative Steve King (R-IA) offered an amendment to the CR that would entirely defund Obamacare. What better way to force Democrats to abide by the crystal clear will of the American people than to offer them the stark choice of passing the CR and defunding Obamacare in the process, or having the government shut down due to their arrogant stubbornness?
And do most Americans care if the government shuts down for a while? NO! We’d be relieved! Shut it down and keep it shut until the Democrats squeal “Uncle!”
So, Republicans should be all for King’s amendment, right?
Monday night, the House Rules Committee headed by David Dreier of California, blocked the amendment, claiming that it violated House rules. This is absolutely false. As King stated in a Washington Times editorial today:
One of the tactics is to argue that my proposal violates the rules by legislating on an appropriations bill. It wasn’t a violation when Congress defunded the Vietnam War, and it’s not a violation now. The CR, the very bill that I seek to amend, has language in it that blocks the use of any funds to move detainees out of Guantanamo Bay. By their definition, they’ve set a precedent and all I ask is to use the same tool to debate and vote on blocking the use of any funds to implement or enforce Obamacare.
Defunding Obamacare also would avoid $105.5 billion in Obamacare seed money slated for spending in 2011 that Nancy Pelosi slipped into the bill last year. So not only could Republicans keep their pledge to stop Obamacare, they would actually be doubling the budget cuts offered in the CR.
As King argued:
It makes no sense to allow funding of a law that the American public has rejected, that the House and every Republican in Congress has voted to repeal and that a federal judge has declared to be unconstitutional and void in its entirety. It is impossible to justify turning away from our oath to defend the Constitution and our obligation to save American taxpayers $105.5 billion that otherwise will be spent unconstitutionally and irresponsibly. Yet, the House is poised to do just that.
The Rules Committee made the call, but my Hill sources tell me this action was initiated by the leadership. That is especially infuriating because Speaker Boehner promised just yesterday to allow a vote on King’s measure. Let me be clear, these are his exact words: “We’re going to do everything that we can in this bill to make sure there’s no money in Obamacare.”
But he then covered himself by adding: “Within the rules of debate…” Pretty obvious that was a setup for the Rules Committee decision. He knew what their answer would be in advance because he defined the boundaries. But alas, not his fault! Against the rules, you see!
Without veto-proof majorities in both houses this is virtually the only chance of stopping Obamacare as Republicans promised. If Obamacare moves forward, say goodbye Republic. This economy has already taken way too many hits to allow one-sixth of it to be absorbed and slowly destroyed by our government, never mind the impact it will have on our collective health!
The voting public has had enough. It is impossible to convey the frustration of working endless hours to support candidates, giving time, money, blood, sweat and tears, only to see solemn campaign pledges arrogantly stomped once the election is passed. Republicans lost big in 2006 precisely due to this frustration. Speaker Boehner has publicly acknowledged this.
With Obama’s reckless leadership over the past two years our worries and concerns have reached a fever pitch. We turned to Republicans in a desperate last-ditch effort to stop Obama’s socialist juggernaut. House Republicans made a solemn campaign pledge to stop Obamacare, and many races turned on that one key issue.
Put a torch under their sphincters and blizzard Congress with calls. NOW!
Let me be absolutely clear. If Speaker Boehner and the Republicans violate the solemn campaign pledges they made to a justifiably panicked electorate, in 2012 they will lose everything gained in 2010, and then some. As the Speaker has said himself many times, Republicans did not get a mandate, they got a chance. If they fail, goodbye America.
And one month into this new Congress, they are already blowing it!
This time is different, Speaker Boehner. This time is really different. Here and now, you need to honor your pledge to stop Obamacare. If you are unwilling to honor that pledge, then you need to step down, now, and allow someone to take your place who has the intestinal fortitude to do so.