House GOP to move this week on health care repeal
January 3rd, 2011
05:00 PM ET
3 years ago

House GOP to move this week on health care repeal

Washington (CNN) - CNN has learned that Republicans plan to try to repeal the health care law almost immediately after taking control of the House, setting the stage for an early confrontation with President Obama.

House GOP sources tell CNN that they will unveil repeal legislation Monday night, even before they claim the majority Wednesday. Then, on Friday, Republicans will hold a critical procedural vote – the first step towards passing the repeal. A final House vote will likely take place next Wednesday.

Republicans have said for some time the House would take up repealing health care, a top GOP campaign issue, during the first month of the new Congress, but up to now have not revealed exactly when. Regardless, the repeal has little chance of passing the Senate.

Republicans say they decided to bring it up this soon to quickly respond to voters' frustration with the health care law, which Republicans argue is hurting the economy.

"Obamacare is a job killer for businesses small and large, and the top priority for House Republicans is going to be to cut spending and grow the economy and jobs," said Brad Dayspring, spokesman for incoming House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-VA.

"Further, Obamacare failed to lower costs as the president promised that it would, and does not allow people to keep the care they currently have if they like it. That is why the House will repeal it next week," he said.

The fact that this will be taken up by the full House so soon without committee hearings will likely draw scorn from Democrats, since Republicans have pledged to make the House more open and transparent.

But, GOP sources insist the health care law has been litigated for two years, and say that they do intend to conduct health care hearings. Along with legislation for repeal will be instructions for key House committees to hold hearings on what new health care law should replace it.

Because House Republicans will have such big numbers in their new majority, they likely have the votes to pass the health care repeal. But Republicans admit the repeal will almost surely die in the Senate, where Democrats maintain control.

Given that reality, Republicans say their long term strategy for doing away with the health care law is to try to use Congress' power of the purse to choke funding and make it hard for the administration to implement the law.

Threats of a health care reform repeal by House Republicans did not appear to be rattling the White House.

An aide pointed out that Democrats still control the Senate and it appears highly unlikely that a repeal would pass in that chamber. In addition President Obama could use his veto pen.

Nonetheless, the White House is planning to push back. "We're going to defend the bill [law] and continue to stress all the benefits that are going into effect right now," said the aide.

And White House spokesman Reid Cherlin said, "We're confident about defending the law."

Meanwhile Senate Democratic leaders, anticipating this House Republican move, sent a letter Monday to incoming House Speaker John Boehner warning that repealing the health care law would take away "popular consumer protections that help middle class Americans," including fixing the so-called Medicare "donut hole," which caused higher prescription drug costs for seniors.

"Taking this benefit away from seniors would be irresponsible and reckless at a time when it is becoming harder and harder for seniors to afford a healthy retirement," wrote the Senate Democratic leaders.


Filed under: Health care • House Republicans
soundoff (228 Responses)
  1. Really?

    So we are still without a 2011 budget and the job market is still terrible and the first thing the new house is going to do is try to get the healthcare legislation repealed with a side project witch hunt? This is not a good start.

    January 3, 2011 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    The Republicans in Congress have no intention of actually proposing solutions to any of the problems facing the average working person in our country. They want to fix nothing because it might jeopardize their chances of gaining power in 2012. They want to repeal health care reform, for example - not because it would help average Americans - but because Obama is for it.

    With our economy in peril, a nuclear crisis in Asia, continuing high unemployment, millions of Americans without the ability to pay for health care ... the Republicans are saying that Congress doesn't need to meet as much this year, because they don't really plan to do much.

    Rich people rule.

    January 3, 2011 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  3. Walter

    The truly troubling aspect of all of their talk and actions is that you never hear any mention of a substitute or replacement policy. Just get rid of it, the end. The greatest nation on earth has no definable means of medically caring for the poor or preventing the middle class from losing minimal wealth due to often the catastrophic cost of medical care. Yup, world leaders we are!!!

    January 3, 2011 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  4. biob

    Seditious, corporate tools! Good luck trying to make that happen, GOP, and I hope that in the process you lose what credibility you have left with the American people.

    January 3, 2011 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  5. Monster Zero

    StuperDumbluxPatrisquat – I believe you will find the crust of the conflict it in Article I, Section 8, however I was merely making jest as to what the 111th Congress and the Obama have done to the Constitution. With that said, a zero is still substantially more than a negative.

    January 3, 2011 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  6. jo an

    They have no shame and little sense!! So expect the worse from them ALL the time and you won't be surprised.

    January 3, 2011 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  7. Dave

    Proposing legislation that is certain to go no-where is pure posturing - the opposite of bold.

    January 3, 2011 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    A massive defunding of the government will result in massive funding of Dem candidates. Bring it on GOPers.

    January 3, 2011 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  9. BobInIrvine

    I thought that the number one priority for the House Repugs was to start "investigating" the Obama Administration. Darryl Issa (R) called the Obama Administration "one of the most corrupt in history" till he back pedaled less than 24 hours later. He also, prior to the election, promised to issue subpoenas to the Administration the day he (Issa) becomes Chair of the committee.

    I agree with most posters here: Go ahead, Rethugs. Make my day.

    January 3, 2011 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  10. Brian, NJ

    It hasn't lowered costs because the law basically starts in 2014. The increases now are increases the insurance companies would have enacted regardless.

    January 3, 2011 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  11. Rick

    What a stunt! Can't the Repulicans ever approach issues that involve the bottom 99% seriously?

    January 3, 2011 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  12. True American

    Is it going to include Congress's federally funded health care insurance? Let's hope so .... that should cut some additional costs.

    January 3, 2011 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  13. jpmichigan

    Obama-care has added cost to existing medical insurance that those who can pay for them have. Everyone cries about medicare, how it won't be there for the baby boomers who now are turning 65. Why it won't be there, because of the wisdom of our President , he is going to take $500 million dollars from medicare to finance his Obama-care. The federal government used Social Security monies in the pass that has never been paid back and now Obama is taking medicare money to pa;y for his health-care entitlement program. We, taxpayers have forever covered the cost of those less fortunate through higher insurance payments, now we continue to do the same but now at medicare money we invested in medicare through payment deducted in our paycheck,

    January 3, 2011 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  14. scieng

    It is great to finally see Congress doing something positive. Health care reform is desparately needed, but Obamacare is worse that what we had. I am glad the GOP is fighting for Americans as hard at the Dems have fought against us.

    January 3, 2011 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  15. Drew

    The GOP seems to have a single Pavlovian strategy, hoping that it takes root with the incurious, barely literate electorate: brand anything that might interfere with their corporate patrons' next billion as "SOCIALISM!" Oh yes, then the villagers' thick ears perk up, their unibrows raise and together, they grab their pitchforks and torches and set out after Obamastein, screaming about government takeovers and other myths. It wold be laughable if these poorly informed Luddites didn't have the right to vote.

    January 3, 2011 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  16. Larry

    The Republicans won't repeal the legislation. The health care industry will make a fortune off this, and that same health care industry donated a LOT of money to the Republican party this past election. This is a show. The health care industry would like to fine tune it a bit, so they can make more money, but they surely want everyone to have to buy insurance They want the ability to turn down those with a pre-existing condition and to not have to accept kids with health issues, nor do they want no cap on lifetime coverage. Otherwise they are just fine with it. Watch the Republican show continue. They have no intention of repealing it.

    January 3, 2011 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  17. welches, oregon

    @ dave
    What? GOP politicians giving up their Government Run Health Care, their Public Option run health care? Their Socialism, Communist run health care? ???? Listen son – it may be good enough for them, but it ain't good enough for every American – Got that!! Now shut up becasue we just gotta get Obama out of office – that's all we care about! No jobs, no reform – nothing – just get that dirty lying communist Muslim out of office.

    PA-L E A S E
    How could this country be so stupid to elect these liars and frauds? That's what I don't understand....oh yea wait yes I do – we have a "horrors of horrors" a black man (who's 1/2 white) as President! And Democratic to boot!

    What do they have to do until you people see these goons for who they really are? When they kill grandma will you believe us? You know, because these fools are looking to cut medicare and medicaid – no more affordable health care for Grandma.

    January 3, 2011 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  18. Brock

    It should be repealed based on all the fabrication and outright lies they made to make it law. Obama lies better than any Preisdent we ever had with the exception of Nixon and Clinton. The difference is Clinton went on to actually do good things and I do not think we will ever get anything from Obama other than pure deceit.

    January 3, 2011 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  19. rodk

    Typical GOP. Instead of focusing on the economy like they promised they're wasting time trying to take health care away from the people. Impeach Boehner and the phony Pee Party politicians. We need people who can work together to create jobs for middle class American's. We're all sick of the Party-Of-No!!!!

    January 3, 2011 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  20. Albo58

    Almost everything the Dimwits and this President promised about their health care bill was a complete lie! Perhaps working on a bi-partisan bill that includes smart and efficient ideas would actually lead to health care reform, which the current law does NOT!

    January 3, 2011 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  21. paul

    Republicans were given a chance as a result of the last election. Looks like the public was wrong. Instead of focusing on job creation and working with this president to do so, they will spend OUR time and money to try and repeal something that they can't (and they know it) do. Tell me, which one of those in the picture above will make that call to the parents of a sick kid and say, "We repealed health care for you kid–sorry"?????

    January 3, 2011 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  22. rob

    i support healthcare reform and what was passed. even though it does me no good as still can't afford the option for those denied coverage by regular insurance companies, i'm eagerly waiting for the time when insurance companies can not deny me coverage or charge me extra for my preexisting conditions. i can't afford the 70-80 dollars each doctor visit (thats not even the specialist) so until then my condition will just get worse untreated.

    January 3, 2011 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  23. Kevin

    Good job GOP! I want to be excluded for pre-existing conditions, dropped from my policy for getting too sick, be unable to include my college age children in my policy, and be unable to get affordable health care. At least you were able to prevent those diabolical Democrats from making the health insurance monopoly obsolete!

    January 3, 2011 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  24. TM

    Unless they get 2/3rds in the House AND Senate, it's a pointless exercise. And after they finish cheering for their empty dog and pony show, can we expect them to move onto actually DOING something that will benefit the country?

    January 3, 2011 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  25. Recall_pelosi

    Repeal it and replace it with something that actually reduces the costs, makes it more affordable, and preserves markets and competition among insurance companies. Replace it with a a system that does not hurt small business and you will help create jobs for the unemployed. Socialized health care, socialized retirement, and governement welfare were never a part of the government our founding leaders created. No wonder there is $13 trillion in debt.

    January 3, 2011 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
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