Conservatives want to use the budgetary process to repeal the ACA. Repealing the ACA would increase the budget deficit, which means that it’s illegal to use the budgetary process to repeal Obamacare.
According to The Hill,
Conservatives in Washington are adamant that Senate Republicans should pass a full repeal of the healthcare law next year, even if it means a certain veto from President Obama.
With Senate Democrats likely to filibuster any stand-alone repeal bill, conservatives say incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) should use a procedural maneuver known as reconciliation to muscle through a bill with 51 votes.
There are two problems with this strategy. First, President Obama would veto any budget resolution that cut funding or repealed the ACA. Secondly, the Byrd Rule prevents lawmakers from adding anything to the budget that increases the deficit. Since the CBO has already concluded that repealing the ACA would increase the budget deficit by $109 billion, Senate Republicans can’t legally use the budgetary process to repeal Obamacare.
In order words, Republicans are trying to pressure Mitch McConnell into illegally repealing the ACA.
The conservatives who are pressuring McConnell don’t care about facts, reality, or legality. They want Obamacare repealed. If Senate Republicans pursue this strategy, they will be setting the country up for another government shutdown over Obamacare. The president would veto the budget; Republicans wouldn’t have enough votes to override the vote, so they will either have to back down and give up their ACA repeal or shut the government down.
No matter how one slices it, the Republican hatred of Obamacare is going put Sen. McConnell and company in a very sticky situation. The Senate majority will already be in jeopardy in 2016. Another government shutdown over the ACA could big a step towards returning control of the Senate back to the Democrats.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association