Free Markets, Free People

The GOP’s temporary strategy to block Obama admin legislation

In a few words it can be summed up by "deny funding".

Republicans will try to block money requested by the Obama administration to implement Democrats’ signature Wall Street and healthcare reforms in a stopgap spending measure expected to clear Congress next week. The GOP is seizing on the administration’s funding request as an opportunity to send a message to voters that it wants to reduce government spending and provide a check on President Obama.

Given they don’t have the votes to repeal it and override the presidential veto which is sure to follow any such attempt, this is about their only choice. How effective it would be – both politically and in reality – remain unknown. As one might imagine, the blowback potential is significant.

The first test – since Democrats haven’t passed a budget – is a continuing resolution (CR) necessary to keep government funded beyond Sept. 30, the end of the fiscal year.  It is needed to prevent a government shutdown.  Republicans are planning to target those parts of the spending request which apply to funding parts of the new legislation:

The Obama administration has asked appropriators crafting the CR to include roughly $20 billion in new spending, according to GOP appropriators.

That request includes $250 million for doctors, nurses, physician assistants and other primary-care health workers. In asking appropriators for the money, the administration said the increase in health workforce funding is needed to meet the demands of the newly insured under the Democrats’ healthcare act.

The administration also requested $14 million for the Treasury Department so it can carry out the new Wall Street reforms.

Says Sen. Lamar Alexander:

“If the question is whether to approve money to fund certain parts of the healthcare law, that’s certainly one way to try to limit its impact,” he said.

Indeed, without majorities or the White House, this is the only avenue that’s really open to the GOP.

Of course that’s brought the usual obstructionist charges from Democrats:

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) blamed Republicans for the need to resort to a stopgap spending measure in the first place.

“I’d much prefer doing individual bills, but with the Republicans blocking everything, that’s hard to do,” Leahy said.

Yeah, bi-partisanship is a bitch, huh Senator – especially when you can’t just ram things through with an filibuster proof majority as you once could.  Someone get him a little cheese for that whine.

In the meantime this is the best way for the GOP to lessen the impact of the bad legislation this administration has passed, until they can gain the majorities and the White House and work toward repeal.

~McQ

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18 Responses to The GOP’s temporary strategy to block Obama admin legislation

  • Why are these sort of tactical political efforts “telegraphed” in advance, like the ravings of Dr. Evil ?

    • It’s an attempt to set the direction of the public discussion.  Complaining about GOP obstructionism tries to make that the issue, before the GOP can point to the Democrats’ unwillingness to craft a 2011 budget and make that the issue.  Then again, the GOP can step up and take full responsibility for trying to block funding for unpopular legislation.  With such an easy set of options, you still watch to see if they find some way to screw it up.

  • Well, the dems and their lackeys will blame the GOP for everything, so why not be the Party of No?  What have they got to lose?  Witness yesterday’s vote on DADT: MiniTru is uniformly reporting it as “Republicans block repeal of DADT” despite two dems (both from Arkansas) voting WITH the GOP and four other democrats refusing to vote at all.

    Anybody remember how The Dear Golfer and his idiot followers pitched his ability to get people to work together?  How he promised that he would negotiate and get results with anybody and everybody? 

    Reality is SUCH a b*tch…

    • The MSM is the real problem. I recall Obama voters thinking that the Republicans were in charge of Congress in 2008, too, despite 2006 election results. I also still hold that if you took a poll, especially of young people, majorities would say the Republicans tried to block Civil Rights.

  • Obstructionist, eh?
     
    A shame they didn’t, you know, pass a budget…  I mean, it can’t be filibustered, and they had the votes…

  • If you’re in a battle for survival, and all you have is a rifle, you should get to be a really good rifleman.  And learn how to roll rocks down on enemies…
    Get creative.  Think outside the box (but, unlike the Collective, inside the law).

  • I don’t see enough people talking about this. This is why a Republican takeover of Congress is so significant, especially the House where the budgets bills must begin. They will have the power to cut back government quite a lot, and while Obama can veto a spending bill, that is the only tool for changing it he will have and deploying it will carry its own set of risks.
     
    A Republican Congress may not be able to repeal Obamacare, but they sure can kneecap it unto death without the Administration’s “permission”, not to mention cut all kinds of other things.
     
    I mean, not that they will, but they could.

  • The Tea Party Patriots and the rest of us will have to maintain the momentum , as well as, keep up the pressure on the Republican establishment types. If we can do that, I wouldn’t worry about being the party of no.

    • Sometimes NO is they only possible response.  And if the new Congress does not say…and mean…NO, the GOP is doomed.  I think they know that, but they will need to know it every FREAKING day.  Way down, deep in their bones.

      • I think a simple ad could make “Party of No” a selling point. My ad would feature a mom or dad in a supermarket. Next to them would be a midget. As they go down the aisle, the midget enthusiastically begs, pouts, and demands everything in sight. As they go on, the demands become crazier and crazier, like for a ferrari. The mom or dad, firmly says no.  End fades to black “Sometimes No is the responsible answer.”

        • Yep, and LOTS of other variations.  Dozens occur to me, and they would all be KILLERS.

        • Quiet reflective Palin mom in supermarket with muzak playing. Mom scans boxes marked “national defense” and picks on up and puts into the cart after some weighing. Picks another box called “infrastructure” etc. Then sees a box named “nationalized healthcare” and considers it and the price tag for a moment, then puts it back on the shelf. Does the same for “Stimulus Choco-puffs!” etc.

          Cut to the same supermarket with wild circus music playing.  Crazy dude in clow outfit pushing an oversize shopping cart rushes down the aisles shoving whole swathes of boxes into his cart, as if it were a shopping spree.