Washington Examiner's Ferrechio: Obamacare Defunding Bill About 'Internal Strategy'

Tuesday, 24 Sep 2013 08:48 PM

By Cathy Burke

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The Senate will probably send an amended resolution back to the House that strips the House-passed Obamacare defunding language — but House Republicans will keep the debate alive by tying the contentious issue to a debate over the nation’s borrowing limit, journalist Susan Ferrechio said Tuesday.

The Washington Examiner’s chief congressional correspondent told "The Steve Malzberg Show" that the Senate version of the continuing resolution "is going to not include the same language that's in the House bill."

"The [House] GOP leadership wants to include Obamacare in that [debt ceiling] debate instead because the public is more amenable to letting that funding limit … expire versus a government shutdown," she explained.

The big unknown is the Senate reaction to that strategy.

"Just today, [Nevada Democratic Sen.] Harry Reid was echoing the president on that saying, 'we're not putting the defunding language in the debt ceiling debate either' because they know that's where this is going," she said.

"This is all about internal strategy which is just mind boggling for the public. You'll probably see a government funding bill go through that doesn't strip out funding for the healthcare law but it may address it in another way."

Ferrechio said the House Republicans’ strategy to defund Obamacare "can't work any other way."

"If they try to put the defunding Obamacare back in the healthcare bill...it's not going to pass over in the Senate," she said. "So it's a hot potato. Nobody wants to be blamed for this and it's about trying to get the government funding bill out of the Congress without too much political damage to anybody. And that's a lot of what goes on around here on a daily basis."

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