Tags: | Barack Obama | Healthcare Reform | Democrats | defeats | retirements | Obamacare

Defeats, Retirements Cost GOP Some Democrat Help Against ACA

By    |   Tuesday, 11 Nov 2014 05:35 PM

Election defeats and retirements have decimated the ranks of House Democrats opposed to Obamacare.

Only two of the 10 House Democrats who have most often joined Republicans in efforts to repeal, defund or otherwise change the healthcare law — President Barack Obama's signature legislative achievement — will be in the House when the 114th Congress convenes in January, the New York Times reports.

The pair are Collin Peterson of Minnesota, who survived a tough GOP challenge in the midterms, and Dan Lipinski of Illinois. Peterson has voted with Republicans to change the law 23 times, and Lipinski has done so on 16 occasions.

Two other House Democrats who have voted 10 times each for changes in the law, Reps. Jim Costa of California and Ron Barber of Arizona, are involved in close elections that have yet to be decided.

In May 2013, the last time the House of Representatives voted for the total repeal of Obamacare, only two Democrats voted with the Republicans. Both lawmakers — Mike McIntyre of North Carolina and Jim Matheson of Utah — are retiring at the conclusion of the 113th Congress.

House Republican leaders are expected to hold more votes next year on repealing Obamacare, as they have done each year since recapturing control of the House in the 2010 midterms. Although they will probably not receive much support for full repeal from Democrats, they are likely to win substantial support for changes in some of the law's most controversial provisions.

Lipinski, for example, cosponsored the Save American Workers Act, introduced by Indiana Republican Rep. Todd Young, which would repeal Obamacare's 30-hours-a-week definition of full-time employment.

"Ask most Americans and they will tell you that a full-time workweek is 40 hours, not 30 as defined in the Affordable Care Act [Obamacare]. If left unchanged, an unintended consequence of the ACA would be a reduction in take-home-pay for millions of hard-working Americans," Lipinski said in urging support for the Save American Workers Act.

"Many families would suddenly be forced to make financial decisions they shouldn't ever have to make, or find another part-time job to try and make up the difference."

In the end, 18 House Democrats joined with Republicans in voting to support the 40-hour workweek, which passed by a vote of 248-179 earlier this year.

Republicans are likely to push for more repeal votes on this and other provisions of Obamacare in the 114th Congress, including provisions to require that large and medium-size employers provide various government-mandated benefits to employees.

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Election defeats and retirements have decimated the ranks of House Democrats opposed to Obamacare. Only two of the 10 House Democrats who have most often joined Republicans in efforts to repeal, defund or otherwise change the . . .
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Tuesday, 11 Nov 2014 05:35 PM
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