Boehner: Obamacare on table for 'fiscal cliff' talks
November 21st, 2012
02:37 PM ET
9 years ago

Boehner: Obamacare on table for 'fiscal cliff' talks

(CNN) – As congressional leaders and President Barack Obama search for common ground to tame the national debt as the weeks dwindle down to end of the year, House Speaker John Boehner said the Affordable Care Act, often referred to as Obamacare, must be included in deficit negotiations.

"We can't afford it, and we can't afford to leave it intact," Boehner wrote of Obama's signature healthcare initiative in the Cincinnati Enquirer. "That's why I've been clear that the law has to stay on the table as both parties discuss ways to solve our nation's massive debt challenge."

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Though Republicans have continually pushed for a full repeal of the law, Obama's re-election marked the next step in its implementation. Each state is required to decide whether to set up its own health care exchange - where individuals and small businesses can purchase affordable health care, subsidizing insurance for low-income consumers - or choose to have the federal government manage the state's exchange.

In the editorial Boehner lauded Ohio Governor John Kasich's decision Friday refusing to set up a state-run exchange, the result being the federal government management of the state's health care exchange.

As states decide how to comply with the law, leaders from both parties are in the midst of contentious dealings on how to reduce the nation's debt and avoid the so-called fiscal cliff – a series of federal spending cuts and tax rates increases set to go into place at the beginning of next year if Washington lawmakers fail to reach a compromise. At the crux of deficit negotiations is revenue. Republicans want to generate revenue by closing loopholes and tax deductions while Democrats have favored raising tax rates on wealthier Americans.

Since former Republican nominee Mitt Romney's defeat and the Supreme Court upheld most of the health care initiative, Boehner said the GOP's "tactics" must change in their effort to repeal Obamacare. Boehner underscored the law's expense and pushed a dismantling of the law through congressional oversight.

"With President Obama and his party still in control of most of Washington, stopping Obamacare will require both bold state leadership and vigorous oversight by members of the House of Representatives," he wrote.

Shortly after the election, Boehner told ABC he would not make repealing the law his mission saying Obamacare was the "law of the land." Boehner later walked back the comment tweeting the GOP's goal remains a full repeal of the law.

Filed under: 2012 • Fiscal Cliff • House Republicans • John Boehner • President Obama
soundoff (64 Responses)
  1. Wire Palladin, S. F

    Let all the tax cuts expire. Enough of the GOP domestic terrorists.

    November 21, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  2. Sniffit

    "Boehner: Obamacare on table for 'fiscal cliff' talks"

    Sniffit: Wanna Bet?

    November 21, 2012 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  3. Elen43

    Boehner and his ilk are just like Mitt. One day this is going to be okay, the next day's not... They seem to forget who won the election, for one... two, who lost the election and why and that POTUS is not giving in at the expense of the people who elected him. Maybe in 2016, IF Gop win, then they can run the table. They don't know the meaning of bipartisanship.

    November 21, 2012 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  4. mm

    Did Boehner miss the fact that Obama won? Or that the majority now supports "Obamacare"?

    November 21, 2012 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  5. n

    Ok then Mr. Boehner, over the cliff we shall go! The Affordable Health Care Act is none negotiable . . . period! When will you people learn? Give up already.

    November 21, 2012 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  6. Woman In California

    the GOP's goal remains a full repeal of the law.

    Will someone please explain to the "Clown Speaker" that ObamaCare is here to stay. In 2014, the republicans are in for a very rude awakening, when they are ALL voted out. Since they don't seem to understand the American people want jobs-not useless votes on "ObamaCare", then we need to vote in people who do understand and are willing to get some work done. I personally can't wait to send all of them back to their rifles, bars and sheets.

    November 21, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  7. Gurgyl

    I feel pity that voted to these GOP thugs. What is this nonsense??? If you have guts–raise tax on wealthy and do not nag on healthcare law. Even john Roberts said. Pass tax reform and RAISE TAX ON WEALTHY. Enough of these American Taliban idiots. Ok.

    November 21, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  8. Al-NY,NY

    Tan Man is out of his mind if he thinks this gimmick will work....what am I saying? They thought Flip wuold win?

    November 21, 2012 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  9. Bill

    Boehner is a clown. Let them expire and let's go over the cliff folks. Tough love, but there is no dealing with these pathetic obstructionists.

    November 21, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  10. Sniffit

    ""With President Obama and his party still in control of most of Washington, stopping Obamacare will require both bold state leadership and vigorous oversight by members of the House of Representatives,""

    In other words, GOP/Teatroll governors and state legislatures plan (and have already started) to do everything they can to thwart proper implementation of the ACA and to prevent it from operating effectively so that GOP/Teatroll Congresscritters can turn around and say " are brokenz!!!! We telled you so!!! Now we is gonna have to burn teh village in order to save it!!!"

    Yawn. The GOP's neverending effort to manufacture the proof for their self-serving prophecy of government's always-failure (i.e., intenionally preventing it from working and doing everything they can to make it fail) does more damage to our country than any single other thing in existence. Destroying every effort the government makes to do anything, just so you can claim that government can't do anything right, should be a bridge too far. It's certainly a bridge to nowhere. Enough is enough.

    November 21, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    Sorry, Captain Orangeglow, but we don't negotiate with terrorists.

    November 21, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  12. California Gary

    Silly man.......talking like he is negotiating from a position of strength.

    November 21, 2012 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  13. Smikal

    The GOP insists on spiraling into destructive factionalism. Party first!

    November 21, 2012 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  14. Wire Palladin, S. F

    The majority of Americans are starting to see the benefits of the ACA, and seem to be happy with it. It is time for the Bush cuts to expire so we can address the republican debt created by tax cuts for the wealthy, unnecessary wars, TARP, unfunded drug programs, etc. The republicans have been on the wrong side of history for my entire lifetime (I'm 67), and by 2014, the baggers will start paying for their domestic terrorism.

    November 21, 2012 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  15. rs

    The GOP is nothing but a financial terrorist organization. Really? Take healthcare away from Americans so they can give the richest Americans more tax cuts? I think not. It is high time Boehner and friends realize America can't afford the GOP any longer.

    November 21, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  16. ST

    Boehner should understand that the Affordable Care Act is the necessity not a luxury. Going after it, is like declaring death to those who desperately need it. It is a big shame to a person who is holding such a position as Boehner has, to come up with such unthinkable idea.

    November 21, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  17. Travis

    @ Woman In California
    " I personally can't wait to send all of them back to their rifles, bars and sheets."

    For someone who claims to be a Christian, you sure have a funny way of expressing it.

    November 21, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  18. rs

    Quoting Boehner: "With President Obama and his party still in control of most of Washington, stopping Obamacare will require both bold state leadership and vigorous oversight by members of the House of Representatives"

    Hmmmm. The psychosis runs deep in this one.....
    Wake up GOP- you lost!

    November 21, 2012 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  19. david

    Boehner urside lost! either give Obama all he wants or an army of us will swarm ohio to make sure we vote u out!!!

    November 21, 2012 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  20. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Bonehead, Obamacare is the LAW as is Roe-vs. Wade, by the way.
    Neither one is going anywhere.
    Spin again and thanks for playing.

    November 21, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  21. Alan

    I believe he's cow-towing to his right and forgetting about the country as a whole again. Shame on you Mr. Cry-baby Boehner!. I suggest putting a new law on the books like the one in california where the politicians in Sacramento do not get paid until they agree on a balanced budget that the governor will accept!. Either A – the debt reduction of not paying people like Boehner will help the national debt or B – gridlock on simply paying the nation's bills and keeping the country running won't be held up by bureaucrats who waste air time with non sensical statements like his!.

    We have a uninimity of opinion on this one, he's already had too much of the holiday cheer (drink)!

    November 21, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  22. Wire Palladin, S. F

    Compared to the Bush/republican near depression which was a fiscal cliff, this is a speed bump because we return to the fiscal sanity of the Clinton years.

    November 21, 2012 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |

    Boehner: Obamacare on table for 'fiscal cliff' talks

    Kelby: NO IT'S NOT

    The CBO says Obamacare is deficit neutral. As a result, it is not on the table. Boehner is just trying to score political points with his base

    November 21, 2012 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  24. pntherpaw86

    Let these Republican governors continue to decline to set up insurance exchanges in their states. The Federal government will have no problem at all implementing it and you will have absolutely zero input on how it will be run in your state. GOP obstructionism will not stand in the way of progress.

    November 21, 2012 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  25. Jeetu

    I think the American public has already spoken on the issues involved in re-electing Obama as POTUIS. The speaker of the House is being less than honest in his attempt to undermine the American public. The fact s that the American public want the buish tax cuts to expire for the rich people, close the tax loopholes, and then find some solutions to create infrasructure jobs along with investments in education, energy etc. These efforts will make the economy growm create jobs, and help us reduce deficit in the long-run. Short of doing all these is cheating the American people of the election and not solve the problems.

    No, Mr. Speaker, the requirement that 40+ million people be provided medical insurance is a must and is not negotiable. Anyone who thinks otherwise will lose their election in 2014.

    November 21, 2012 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
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