GOP: Repeal. Replace. Repeat empty rhetoric.

Conservative Marc Thiessen is worried that Republicans may be backing away from “repeal, replace”:

But today some Republicans are losing their nerve on repeal. Rep. Mark Kirk, who is running for the Senate in Illinois, signed the repeal pledge and even vowed to “lead the effort” for repeal, but has since backed off, declaring “I voted against it, but we lost.” Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina , who is running for reelection, has said that “total repeal” is unlikely. And Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, who is in charge of messaging for the Republican Senate leadership, says that instead of repeal, Republicans should promise “at least big changes” to the bill.

Not exactly a resounding battle cry.

Thiessen, a former Bush 43 speechwriter, need not have worried. This morning, House Minority Leader John Boehner gave a full-throated yell of the old battlecry.

Repealing healthcare reform will be Republicans’ “No. 1 priority,” their House leader said Monday.

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said that repealing the healthcare legislation passed in Congress last month and signed into law by President Barack Obama would be the GOP’s top priority if it wins back control of Congress this fall. “They got everything else in the entire bureaucracy that they need to control our healthcare system … with the signing of this bill,” Boehner said during an interview on WFLA’s “Bud Hedinger Show.” “That’s why repealing this bill has to be our No. 1 priority.”

But a battlecry is all it is. There is not one iota of political reality behind it. As Newt Gingrich has acknowledged, if a GOP-controlled Congress were to pass a bill repealing the law, Obama would veto it. Republicans aren’t likely to get enough votes in the mid-terms to override a veto, even if they were to take both houses of Congress (which is quite unlikely.)
And replace? That’s fantasy, too, as my colleague Jay Bookman has explained:

So if the GOP plan is going to ensure that pre-existing conditions are covered, as Chambliss and McConnell suggested, how would they do it without individual mandates? What mechanism would they use?

Chambliss and McConnell had no answer. Literally.

After Chambliss fumbled an initial response, McConnell broke in with a long and familiar condemnation of the Democratic plan, including its failure to include tort reform. After a few minutes, I interrupted and brought him back to the question: OK, but how are the Republicans going to cover pre-existing conditions?

“The premiums are going up either way,” he said.

OK, I responded, a little stunned. That doesn’t explain how the Republicans intend to cover pre-existing conditions.

“The premiums are going up either way,” he repeated.

That was that. We moved on, and I still don’t have my answer.

86 comments Add your comment

Barry Osborne

April 12th, 2010
5:15 pm

The Republicans needed a leader, but all they got was John Boehner. The fact that this is all they could come up with speaks volumes about the state of the party.

And, hey, I’m an independent. What I’m saying is he’s no better than Pelosi and Reid. God help us all.

Scott

April 12th, 2010
5:21 pm

Empty rhetoric, now that is rich coming from a puppet of the left like you Cynthia!

Road Scholar

April 12th, 2010
5:22 pm

Healthcare is going to be who’s Waterloo?

ctucker

April 12th, 2010
5:33 pm

Good question, Road Scholar.

Scarecrow

April 12th, 2010
5:40 pm

According to Neal Bortz — All of the Obama voter should be on the “chopping block” if a Company has to downsize — because it was Obama policies that caused it!! What a jerk!!!! Can this be considered “implied racism”!!!!

Scout

April 12th, 2010
5:49 pm

Repeal ! Replace ! Rescue our Republic !

arnold

April 12th, 2010
5:51 pm

The Republican Party is presently bankrupt. They will continue to be so unless they change their leadership and recognize the world is changing. It’s changing without them. They might as well bend over, put their head between their legs and kiss it all goodbye.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
5:57 pm

The GOP, Palin, Tea Party and the others all suffer the same disease. They all have nice little talking points and soundbites but no substance. There is no reality to their promises. The morons among them chant “kick them all out” and then what? Who are the replacements?

Is the GOP suddeningly going to demand “bi-partianship”. They still dont understand the word.

So what are they really running on. The GOP will tie up the country for 2 years or more so that they hope to elect a President. Good luck with that. The nation will not elect someone on a campaign of just say no. They will want some substance. Don’t hold your breath…because it ain’t coming.

ctucker

April 12th, 2010
5:58 pm

Scarecrow, It may not be racism, but if a manager fires someone because of who they voted for, the employee could sue. And likely win.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
6:04 pm

Scarecrow…Bortz is an idiot. But hey lets say someone really follows that sort of stupidity? SO when jobs are being created as they are now, employers should hire only those who voted for Obama?

Kala

April 12th, 2010
6:12 pm

Cynthia Tucker is the most bitter hateful woman on the planet. She is one of the league of perpetual whiners.

Reality Check

April 12th, 2010
6:17 pm

I love the trap that has been laid out for the republicans…Either go along with HIR or try to con as many people as you can that the seniors want their Donut hole back, that people should want to be dropped from their insurance plans because of their pre-existing conditions, that recision IS A Good thing, that Insurance companies must allow children to stay on their parent’s insurance plans until their 26th birthday, that small businesses get tax credits for premiums, that they should want not only lifetime limit on the coverage they get but that they should have annual limits on the same coverage.

Good Luck trying to sell that one to people…

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
6:20 pm

Kala…… sounds to me like the whiners and losers are those who post here and attack Ms. Tucker for her opinion on a very personal basis. You do have some choices: you dont have to read her opinions or maybe you can post something that reflects a serious counterpoint or argument to demonstrate why she is wrong. Merely posting an attack shows you have no real thought process and are just some mindless unwelcome hateful bitter drone. Those who post attacks without thought or counterpoint truly demonstrate how pathetic they are themselves. Your post reflects your lack of intelligent thought….not an attack on Ms. Tucker.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
6:23 pm

Perhaps some will get away with election soundbites in a mid term….but they are definitely not going to win a Presidential election with that. 2 more years the Party of No will likely result in a bigger loss for the Republicans. Election success if any in 2010 will be the end of the GOP….

DaveT

April 12th, 2010
6:24 pm

Don’t bother Cynthia. It will be repealed. Either the GOP will do it (hopefully before too much damage is done) or economic reality will. Either way, this disaster is unsustainable.

blutto

April 12th, 2010
6:25 pm

Keep up the good fight!: “The nation will not elect someone on a campaign of just say no.”

It depends on what or who the nation is saying “no” to. “No” to higher taxes works. “No” to out of control government spending works. “No” to misguided foreign policy that offends our allies while rewarding our enemies works. “No” to politicians who vote for massive health care legislation without having read it works.

“They will want some substance.”

You mean something really, really specific like “hope and change”? How’s that working out for you?

Kamchak

April 12th, 2010
6:26 pm

According to Neal Bortz —

There’s your sign.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
6:29 pm

blutto….its worked great. So far…healthcare reform, saved from the brink of depression, a pending reduction in nuclear weapons, just to name a few. But its been less than 2 years, wait until the end of 8!

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
6:30 pm

Yep, quoting Bookman is a sure way to bolster an argument. And the Washington Post as well. Must be true.

Cynthia, did you happen to notice the Gallup and Rasmussen polls showing the majority of Americans want this travesty gone? Didn’t think so.

Your nanny-nanny-poo-poo attitude is disgusting. How about you try to explain away the fact that in spite of your best efforts, as well as those in the rest of the dinosaur media, us dogs ain’t buying the dog food.

I guess it’s because we’re stupid.

No, that’s not it. We’re racists! Yeah, that’s the ticket! I mean after all, Rep. Lewis and his race baiting buddies said we were, and the AJC reported his assertions as fact.

No proof, of course.

Don’t need it in Liberal-world. It fits your worldview, so it’s a fact.

I have no idea what will happen in November, but how about you tell me how the greatness that is all Obama is going to keep the House of Representatives in liberal control?

Kamchak

April 12th, 2010
6:31 pm

How’s that working out for you?

Just fine, thank you.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
6:32 pm

Oh I forgot…1 supreme court justice and another coming. Yep…..Hope and change is a work in progress…. Of course, now we’ve learned Country First really just means Palin quits first and then goes hollywood.

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
6:38 pm

Obama wants to raise Capital Gains taxes 33% (15% to 20%)! That will certainly help the jobless situation. What a genius!

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
6:44 pm

While Rome burns in recession and unemployment, our fearless leader is in Europe (his societal ideal, except perhaps Cuba) fiddling away our national security with unilateral disarmament.

Jimmy, congratulations! You are no longer the worst president in our history.

MikeS

April 12th, 2010
6:45 pm

The Republican plan to do away with mandates involves subsidized high risk pools for dealing with things like preexisting illnesses. That plan, in many variations has been offered since 2004. The mandates are unnecessary. They enslave the young and healthy to pay for coverage of millions of people who would choose not to be covered, if that was legal.

blutto

April 12th, 2010
6:46 pm

Keep up the good fight: “Election success if any in 2010 will be the end of the GOP…”

So true. Just like when the glory days of FDR and HST were certain to herald “the end of the GOP because the brilliant Adlai Stevenson was a shoo-in over dumb old Ike. But Ike served two terms. Then Nixon’s 1960 loss and Goldwater’s defeat in 1964 spelled “the end of the GOP” (followed four years later by 8 years of a Republican in the White House). Then four years after Watergate meant “the end of the GOP,” Reagan carried 44 States in 1980 and 49 States in 1984 followed by the elder Bush carrying 40 States in 1988. But Clinton’s elections foretold “the end of the GOP” … except that George W. Bush was President for two terms after Clinton departed.

Are you that guy who carries “the end is near” sign?

Granny Godzilla

April 12th, 2010
6:48 pm

Empty Rhetoric from the GOP? So what’s new?

I remember when Republicans were nicer.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
6:54 pm

Why Sinkwich….Bush surpassed Carter on the list of worse Presidents ever some years ago.

“unilateral disarmament”? Where?

And treating capital gains (which is how the hedge fund managers get to treat their salaries unlike blue collar workers) at a higher tax rate hurts how? And come on, give some meaningful discussion, and not just more ranting talking points.

This is what is wrong with the tea party and others. Nice rants but no substance. No reasoned thought. No balance. Everything is to the extreme. “He’s a socialist, we’re patriots.” The hell you are!

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
6:54 pm

Granny:

“I remember when Republicans were nicer.”

Like when they bent over for every looney liberal idea that came down the pike? Just not so much?

It’s over. It’s not Republican anymore. It’s conservative.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
6:55 pm

I dont need to Blutto….one of the tea parties already carried it for them.

Granny Godzilla

April 12th, 2010
6:56 pm

…pssssst the President is not overseas, he’s in DC, and he’s trying with leaders from all over this small planet to keep your butt safe.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
7:01 pm

Morale majority…conservative….GOP….Reganites, Bushies, oh my! Change the labels, it still the same.

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
7:02 pm

Hi, Keep Up, try to will you?

I invest in companies (in post-tax dollars) hoping for a return. I get taxed higher, I’m less likely to do that. No investment, no jobs for blue collared workers. Get it?

I know you hate “the man.” Did you ever get a job from a homeless liberal?

The Man makes this country thrive. Give him incentive to succeed and we all do.

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
7:05 pm

Granny:

“…he’s trying with leaders from all over this small planet to keep your butt safe.”

He’s kissing them. No leadership, just apologies and begging.

He’s not a leader, he’s a loser. That makes us less safe.

But thanks for asking.

Granny Godzilla

April 12th, 2010
7:07 pm

F., can I call you that?

If that’s what you and your daddy did, I can imagine how unhappy you must be.

My Uncle Billy was a Republican. He bent over for no one.
He was a country gentleman, extremely successful businessman, a hero in North Africa in WWII, a loving husband and father and the neatest uncle ever for a city girl. He was nicer.

Call them conservatives, no matter. They were nicer.

They didn’t much dwell on being bent over. They were nicer.

I guess you just don’t get it.

Granny Godzilla

April 12th, 2010
7:09 pm

Then again, maybe you do.

Cool.

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
7:12 pm

Granny, you’re right, I’m not happy with Obama. Would your Uncle Billy vote for a socialist like him?

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
7:13 pm

Hey Sinkwich…do you do more than read Economics for Dummies? The capital gains rate has been as high as 28% and still there was investment.

Many liberals have provide jobs. Not all homeless are liberals. Not all liberals are homeless, but perhaps you failed to notice. You’re platitudes without boundaries demonstrate the 30 second sound bite without meaning or critical evaluation. You presume there are other better investments or are you just going to sit on your money? Tax rates have fluctuated over the years….capital investment continues.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
7:14 pm

Ooooo…. there it is… SOCIALIST. When reason and argument cant support you, throw out that, ye Patriots!

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
7:22 pm

Hi, Keep Up, I guess you haven’t.

Please explain how taking money away from those who actually provide jobs (as opposed to government bureaucrat make-work crap like building turtle-tunnels and such) will improve the economy.

I guess you can’t.

Screw the Man !!! <— liberal mantra.

Kamchak

April 12th, 2010
7:23 pm

Like when they bent over for every looney liberal idea that came down the pike?

I see that someone here shares el Rushbo’s obsession.

Eeeeewwwwwww.

Granny Godzilla

April 12th, 2010
7:25 pm

F

First Uncle Billy would have known what a socialist was and rapped your knuckles for being ignorant. He did not tolerate stupid.

Then he would look at McCains erratic campaign, his tragic veep choice,
the suspended campaign and the ugliness of those last months and yes,
voted for Barack Obama.

Mind you, he’d grumble and he’d write letters. He was nicer.

Granny Godzilla

April 12th, 2010
7:28 pm

F

Please explain how you can sell your product if there is no demand?

Tomtastic

April 12th, 2010
7:28 pm

Almost as empty as “Hope and Change” or the current fav…”All we are saying is give peace a chance”
CT gets all wee-weed up when Republicans have slogans but its crickets for the Obmacrats. Hypocrite.

Keep up the good fight!

April 12th, 2010
7:39 pm

Sinkwich…..again…not much substance to your thought is there. I mean the light is on but nobody home?

By your argument, there should be no captial gains taxes and everyone would be employed? Hey how about no income tax and we just tax capital gains…think of all the products that could be bought with a trickle up economy! Walmart provides lots of jobs in China and few well paid jobs here in the US. But you are right. When 1% earns more than the remaining 95% combined, sure give them more tax breaks because its stupid not too. Don’t bother considering the economic investment curves, elastic vs inelastic spending, investment alternatives……its all simple. Make the rich richer and we’ll all be happy!

But your right…Hoover Dam provides no jobs. Highways and bridges do not impact economies. Airports do not impact economies. Government investment in university research that produces things like the internet and many others are horrible drags on the economy.

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
7:39 pm

Granny, I agree that McCain is pathetic. But that’s because he is a RINO. He has no core beliefs.

But he is not a socialist. Your Uncle Billy, if he had any brains at all, would have realized that “spread-the wealth” Hopey Changey Obama was a Castro-ite. Therefore he would have held his nose, like I did, and voted McCain.

I’m just projecting though.

Dee keith

April 12th, 2010
7:42 pm

If the HC bill was as bad as Repugnants say it is they would simply let it pass, and wait for it to do the damage they claim it would cause. Think about it, What would be the perfect excuse for Repugs. to do what they really want to do, which is get rid of medicare, medicade, and S.S., wait for a wall street style HC crisis in this country, and say we can’t afford to bail out the industry, get rid of the SOCIALIST programs, and then blame the Dems HC bill.

justiceserved

April 12th, 2010
7:45 pm

Boehner is the dimwit who said the bill was too long, and held up the Constitution and quoted the Dec. of Ind. I doubt he can read. He can tell Granny they’re opening up the donut hole again, and tell the mother with the son suffering from leukemia that they can’t get healthcare due to pre-existing conditions. Why don’t they repeal ss, medicare, medicaid, & the voting rights act as well, they were against them as well. To quote sister Sarah, we’re not retreating John, we’re reloading. Make our day you coward.

Granny Godzilla

April 12th, 2010
7:47 pm

No F, not projecting. Wrong.

Wrong about Uncle Billy. Wrong about Obama. Wrong about socialism.

I’m glad you make money. I’m glad it makes you happy.

I make money too, so does Mr. G. We too are happy.

Tell us about your core beliefs.

F. Sinkwich

April 12th, 2010
7:47 pm

Hi, Keep Up, I know you’re trying, by try harder.

I think you have made some bad choices in your life, otherwise why would you hate achievers so much?

Did you study in school? Do you have a tatoo? Do you work more than 40 hours a week, if at all?

Do you want work or a job? Maybe neither.

Granny Godzilla

April 12th, 2010
7:50 pm

reloading….make our day cowards….right after I hit you with my purse DHS would be all over you like white on rice……but they wouldn’t find much left…..