ICYMI: The Real Fight Is In the House

March 5, 2010

Code Red: The Real Fight Is In the House

House Republicans Leading the Last Line of Defense

FOXNEWS: If the House passes the Christmas Eve version of the Senate health care reform bill, the game is up and the American people lose. If, on the other hand, the House rejects the original Senate bill, it’s all over…Ultimately, it doesn’t matter whether or not the Senate passes changes to its health care bill via reconciliation. That’s because the reconciliation process cannot even begin until after the House passes the Senate bill exactly as it passed the Senate on Christmas Eve. That means it must pass with the abortion language already rejected by Rep. Bart Stupak and others still intact. It also must pass with the outrageous pork barrel spending deals cut for Nebraska, Louisiana, Connecticut, and others. In other words, the bill must pass the House with everything in it that the American people have already made clear they hate.” (Philip Kerpen, “Forget Reconciliation – Why the Real Fight Is In the House,” FOXNews.com, 3/4/10)


NATIONAL REVIEW ONLINE: “All of the talk about reconciliation seems to have distracted people — like a red herring — from a simple but crucial fact: If the House goes first, as now appears to be the plan, and passes the Senate health care overhaul, the president would then have a bill in hand that had passed both houses of Congress, and — whether reconciliation subsequently succeeded or failed in the Senate — we would have Obamacare. Reconciliation would then be like the exhibition ice skating in the Olympics after the medals have been awarded: interesting to some, but wholly irrelevant to anything that really matters. The attention is on the Senate, but the battle is in the House.” (Jeffery H. Anderson, “Don’t Leave the House Unattended,” National Review Online, 3/4/10)


GRACE-MARIE TURNER: “Only one thing matters. And that is convincing the House to pass the Senate bill. Everything else is a side show at best. Once House members take the vote on the Senate bill, they have absolutely no control over what the Senate does next. The Senate may or may not be able to get a second bill passed to address concerns of the House. And that means House Democrats will be on the hook this fall for a vote for:


  • The Cornhusker Kickback, the Louisiana Purchase, and every other vote-buying deal buried in the Senate bill.
  • Abortion language that clearly allows federal funding for abortion and which the U.S. Conference of Bishops solidly opposes.
  • The Cadillac tax on high-cost health insurance policies that labor unions hate.
  • Weak enforcement provisions for the individual mandate that health insurers say will cause pools to disintegrate, causing premiums to skyrocket for those still buying policies.


“And that’s just for starters. It would be the dupe of all time if House members were to be convinced that they must go first to keep the process moving forward, only to find that ObamaCare passes the finish line in the form of the Senate billIt will be interesting to watch them this fall trying to explain to constituents, who already have told them in no uncertain terms that they hate this legislation, that they were promised that they would have a second chance to take a vote to fix itIn this game, there will be no second chances.” (Grace-Marie Turner, “One Simple Agenda,” Galen Institute, 3/4/10)


WEEKLY STANDARD: House members would be left holding the bag. Target squarely on their chests, they would now get to face their fuming constituents after having passed a $2.5 trillion bill that would allow public funding of abortion, would send $100 million to Nebraska, $300 million to Louisiana, $100 million to Connecticut, would exempt South Florida’s Medicare Advantage enrollees from annual $2,100 cuts in Medicare Advantage benefits, would raise taxes, raise deficits, raise health costs, empower Washington, reduce liberty, politicize medicine, and jeopardize the quality of health care.  Most of all, they would feel the citizenry’s wrath for having voted to pass a bill that only 25 percent of Americans support. Right now, the House holds all the power over ObamaCare.  Nothing can happen unless it acts.  But if its members are foolish enough to expect promises not made in writing to be followed through on at a future date, they deserve every bit of backlash the voters would have in store for them.” (Jeffrey H. Anderson, “Twenty-One Key Democrats – and Three Things for Them to Consider,” Weekly Standard, 3/3/10)