Skip to comments.Myths of the Obamacare Shutdown Soap Opera
Posted on 09/21/2013 10:01:18 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
There are a number of misperceptions of the internecine dispute taking place among conservatives, and within the Republican Party, around the effort by some to use the continuing resolution and the possibility of a government shutdown, to attempt to defund Obamacare.
Myth #1: The debate pits the conservative movement against the Republican congressional leadership. Some of the coverage of the debate states or implies, incorrectly, that conservatives are united behind the shutdown strategy, and GOP leaders like John Boehner are the locus of opposition.
This is inaccurate. Plenty of GOP representatives and senators whose voting records are unquestionably conservative, such as Paul Ryan and Tom Coburn, have criticized the strategy. There are dozens of anti-Obamacare activists who have gone on the record supporting a one-year delay in the laws implementation as an alternative to the defund approach. While it is possible to support all of the above, I know firsthand that many, if not most, supporters of the delay strategy prefer it to the defund approach. Americans for Tax Reform is perhaps the most significant conservative activist group that has taken this position publicly.
Myth #2: Shutdown skeptics are confused about Ted Cruzs recent comments that appeared to give up on the possibility of passing the defund CR in the Senate. Cruz never said his approach would work, says Rich below.
However, as Rich subsequently notes, Cruz went out of his way to question the motives of those who publicly expressed skepticism that his strategy would work. He called them members of a surrender caucus and derided them as politics-as-usual establishment quislings.
As far as I know, Cruz has not reached out to a single Democrat in the Senate in attempt to cobble together the 60 votes necessary to defund Obamacare in that body. He and his supporters have instead trained their fire on Republicans who argue that his strategy wont work.
The Senate Conservatives Fund, a PAC with ties to Heritage President Jim DeMint, has raised and spent considerable money to run several ads against Republican senators McConnell, Flake, Cochran, Burr, Isakson, and Graham, attacking them for expressing skepticism about the defund strategy. SCF has not run a single ad on the topic criticizing Democrats.
Myth #3: The outrage expressed by House conservatives is surprising.
There are a lot of conservatives in Washington and across the country who have worked hard to oppose Obamacare. Most of them have set small disagreements aside, when theyve cropped up, in order to focus on the larger goal that unites them.
This episode, uniquely, has not involved such collaborative efforts. There has never been any consensus or unity around the defund approach, right from its initial stages. Numerous prominent anti-Obamacare activists expressed skepticism and outright opposition to the shutdown strategy when it was first disclosed, albeit through private channels. The response from pro-shutdown activists was that they would go ahead anyway.
The skeptics were unhappy, but have mostly tried to keep their upper lips stiff in order to preserve some semblance of unity. Every time Ted Cruz called them members of a surrender caucus, however, or Mike Lee told them they owned Obamacare because they hadnt signed on to the strategy, resentments built up.
When Cruz preemptively conceded that the Senate was unlikely to pass a defunded continuing resolution, but implied that he would resume the surrender caucus talk if the House didnt defund Obamacare a second time, many skeptics had finally had enough.
If any shutdown comes, it will properly be the actions of Harry Reid and the Current Occupant now squatting in the White Hut that caused the shutdown. Both have a perfectly good opportunity to move forward on any of the budgets already submitted the House of Representatives and now languishing in the Senate. Continuing Resolutions are NOT budgets, they are letters to the bank (Federal Reserve) making excuses for failure to act both timely and in a prudent manner.
Revenue in huge quantities will still continue to flow into the Treasury, offset by the fact that disbursals will also continue to flow out of the Treasury, in even greater volume than the revenue.
How does the US government stay in business? I guess they are just lucky.
This time, however, the conservative world is aroused, wary, informed and therefore in no weakened and ignorant state to be bamboozled by Republican leaders but set to react in fury if they sense betrayal. Their patience looks soon to be tested with several Rino Senators preparing to vote cloture. We shall see how the base reacts.
Before John Boehner's switch in time, I posted several times that the leadership of the party, including John Boehner, did not realize the depth of feeling animating the conservative movement and the danger to the Republican Party of a profound rupture which would very possibly give rise to a third-party which would doom the Republicans to the wilderness for years. I said it was important for conservatives to make Boehner and his henchmen more afraid of conservatives than they were of the media and K St. I think conservatives succeeded.
I think we have Ted Cruz, Mike Lee and Rand Paul and some other stalwarts to thank for precipitating this battle. I have come to the point, and I know many FReepers have got there before me, in which my patience with the Republican Party has come to an end. For example, this article cites many strong Republicans with unimpeachable conservative credentials having reservations about the effort to defund. Bunk! Most of these guys were around shoveling money down a hole for eight years under Bush. Most of them were kings of earmarks. Now they profess impotence in the face of tyranny and further call for prudence and realism when they mean abject surrender. Ted Cruz has one thing on his side, irrefutable logic, when he says that you lose 100% of every battle in which you surrender before you fight.
This is a time of tempering of the Republican Party. If it passes this upcoming test, which is if it holds together against a media shit storm a sample of which we are reading in this article, it will emerge stronger as a viable party ready to win in 2014. This will be so even if it fails to defund Obamacare but only if it tries.
But if the Republicans fail this test, if they fail to hold the line, if they continue this backstabbing, then conservatives will desert them en masse and they will face a lickin' in 2014 which will be disastrous but, at least, it will mark the birth of real, robust grassroots conservatism.
These Rinos who call out for prudence ought to really come clear about which course represents the prudent path.
It’s very simple. A huge swath of Republicans and Conservative are fed up with NUANCE. Win or lose, it’s time to fight, as the Founders did.
National Review, Weekly Standard, WSJ ... they have been flushed out into RINO land for all to see.
If Obama fails to get 100% of Obamacare only he can shut it down.