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April 01, 2010

John McCain Is Flirting With Me About Health Care Repeal

He did this every now and then during the '08 campaign. I know I should know better, it's just an election season contrivance that will be forgotten once Hayworth is gone and it's safe for the conservative screwing Mav to return but, it's kind of a cute idea, right?

"When I say repeal, people say you're not going to be able to do it," he said on KQTH FM Radio. "I am confident we will get majorities in both houses in the fall. And that means the power of the purse...If we cut off the money, it doesn't take an override to a veto."

McCain's comments shows that GOPers are considering alternatives to strike down the healthcare law, passed with a party-line vote this month, outside of repealing it outright.

Brooke Buchanan, a McCain spokesperson told The Hill that the move would be done using "fencing language" in an appropriations bill that would get rid of the health bill funding.

But under the constitution, the president has the right to veto any bill that is passed by Congress. Yet Buchanan said that placing the language in the appropriations bill would force Obama to veto the entire legislation, suggesting that the president would rather not take that action.

It's actually quite simple (in theory)...Obama can veto appropriation bills until the cows come home but he can't force Congress to add anything to the bills by vetoing them. What Obama can do is force a government shut down like Clinton did in the '90s as a way to bring pressure on the Republicans to add money in. Then the media arm of the DNC (aka ABC, CBS, NBC, etc) go into action a show all the horrible things that happen when people don't get their government money.

At that point it becomes a political showdown and a contest of wills.

How that would play out is tough to say at this point. My guess is Obama would win out in the end. The messaging power of the presidency is too strong to go up against a fractured Congress with 535 different agendas, the proverbial herd of cats.

Still, that's all a long way off. Right now I like that McCain is fighting back against the 'it can't be done' narrative that is starting to take hold. As I said yesterday, repeal is going to be a long and hard process. We aren't going to have the votes after this November but it's not a one election cycle fight.

As I said the day after this bill passed, it was Day 1. All past transgressions were forgotten (not necessarily forgiven) for anyone willing to fight this fight. I know supporting McCain only ends in tears but for now...go Mav!

Don't forget to check the Club for Growth's "Repeal It" website to see if your candidate(s) have taken the pledge.

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posted by DrewM. at 11:46 AM

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