Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Defunding Obamacare Before It’s Too Late

Obamacare has already been a scourge to the American people.  Costs are skyrocketing and the Congressional Budget Office recently reported that it will force 7 million Americans out of their existing health insurance.  Congress passed the bill, and only now are we finding out what is in Obamacare.  This downward spiral can and must be prevented, though.  Although many of Obamacare’s provisions are now the law of the land, many of the law’s most damaging and irreversible provisions do not take effect until 2014.

If lawmakers fail to defund Obamacare, it will cost the American people an estimated $2.6 trillion over ten years, increasing the federal government’s health spending by 15 percent.  The window of opportunity to stop the implementation of these massive new subsidies is closing.  On October 1, 2013, open enrollment begins for the federally backed health care exchanges. On January 1, 2014, new money from Washington will begin flowing to states and individuals, all but ensuring that these new entitlements will become a permanent fixture of life in America.

When Congress returns from the President’s Day recess, they will face immense pressure to pass another continuing resolution (CR) before current government funding expires on March 27.  The CR is the appropriate legislative vehicle by which to reverse course on Obamacare.  It is not rocket science –it is easily done though a series of appropriations riders – but it does require political courage. 

By talking about the sequester, President Obama wants to distract us from Obamacare. Over the next month, we have an opportunity to defund Obamacare – resulting in massive savings for Americans – and stopping the further destruction of America’s health care system.

Conservatives should not approve the forthcoming CR unless it defunds Obamacare; and we’re not talking about a half-hearted effort and fig leaf accomplishment.  Real defunding includes Obamacare’s unworkable exchanges, unsustainable Medicaid expansion, and the myriad of new programs created by the law.  In addition to reversing Obamacare’s financial damages through the series of appropriations riders, there must be an appropriations rider to repeal the HHS mandate that attcks the religious values and principles of countless Americans.

If lawmakers genuinely believe Obamacare is a threat to the very fabric of America, they must fight to defund it on the upcoming CR.  Congress knows conservative opposition to Obamacare is still strong and growing.  Congress must be held accountable.  The Obama administration will of course argue that the CR is not an appropriate legislative vehicle to defund Obamacare.  That’s a foolish political ploy and a means of deferring defunding until all the damage is done.  Now more than ever before, timing is critical and your voices are crucial.


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