Conservative critics of Obamacare are upset that Republicans failed to attach language to the House-passed government funding bill this week that would have followed through on GOP threats to defund the 2010 healthcare reform measure.
According to Politico
, Republican leaders were worried that adding what would amount to Obamacare repeal language would lead the Democratic-controlled Senate to reject the must-pass funding bill, known as the continuing resolution, which is aimed at keeping the government running though the end of fiscal 2013 in September.
Tony Perkins, who heads the conservative Family Research Circle, pointed out that Democrats often have attached priority legislation to “must-pass” laws, but Republicans haven’t.
“It was the best instrument to use to get these issues over the Senate and to the president’s desk,” Perkins told Politico. “The defunding of Obamacare, if Republicans are serious about it — this was the place.”
Having failed to get the defunding language added in the House, conservative groups are now targeting the Senate, where freshman GOP Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has already filed an amendment that eliminates Obamacare. He has threatened to object to any spending measure that doesn’t include his amendment, Politico reported.
Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee has also joined Cruz in support of the amendment.
But the pair’s attempt likely won’t get far. The House passed more than 30 measures last year aimed at repealing Obamacare, but the measures were killed once they got to the Democratic-controlled Senate.
Conservatives, however, aren’t likely to forgive House Republicans for not trying again.
“They have been making excuses ever since they got into town in January of 2011. It’s one excuse after another,” said Brent Bozell, head of ForAmerica and the Media Research Center. “There comes a point where you either make a stand or get out of the way.”
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