GOP's New Health Reform Trick: Don't Fund It

Boehner and Co. know a repeal's impossible

By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 2, 2010 10:23 AM CDT

(Newser) – Republicans threatening to repeal health reform is nothing new, but the GOP is realizing the futility of that and moving on to a new tactic: denying funding to pieces of the bill. "Clearly, with the president’s veto pen, we’re going to have to take interim steps,” says one rep, acknowledging that the GOP would have to score the near-impossible coup of two-thirds majorities in each house for a repeal.

But Politico notes that it's entirely possible for the GOP to block provisions that require future congressional funding, including Medicare overhaul, requiring all Americans to have insurance, and what John Boehner claims will be an “army of new IRS agents." Almost 150 congressional candidates have pledged to defund reform, but Politico notes that the "Swiss cheese" effect on the bill could have backlash: As more popular pieces of reform have been dribbled out, a recent poll finds that only 35% of Americans now oppose it.

House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, points to a poster on health care legislation as Rep. Thaddeus McCotter, R-Mich., listens in Washington, Saturday, Nov. 7, 2009.
House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, points to a poster on health care legislation as Rep. Thaddeus McCotter, R-Mich., listens in Washington, Saturday, Nov. 7, 2009.   (AP Photo/Harry Hamburg)
House Minority Leader John Boehner of Ohio holds up documents outlining the Republican's health care plan, Thursday, Jan. 28, 2010.
House Minority Leader John Boehner of Ohio holds up documents outlining the Republican's health care plan, Thursday, Jan. 28, 2010.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
In this Oct. 29, 2009 file photo House Minority Leader John Boehner stands behind a copy of the Democrats' version of the health care bill during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington.
In this Oct. 29, 2009 file photo House Minority Leader John Boehner stands behind a copy of the Democrats' version of the health care bill during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington.   (AP Photo/Harry Hamburg, File)
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