RepubliCare didn’t even make it to a vote last Friday. By now this is old news. Once the dust settles and every finger has been duly pointed (and there’s plenty of blame for everybody) we’ll need to figure out what to do for take #2. In order to do that, we have to be clear and honest about a few things.
I’ve gone on at length about how the nuclear option should and must be invoked, I’m not going to revisit that right now. What really needs to happen for the next attempt (and there will be a next attempt) is to lose any delusions that the Democrats are ever going to do anything but block, obstruct, delay, and oppose any efforts to upend and abolish the Unaffordable Do-Not-Care Act. It’s not just the fact that they’re Democrats and fouling up Republicans and the country in general is what they do. It’s not just the fact that this is the signature piece of legislation for some guy they thought was cool despite being a useless wimp. It’s what they have invested in this.
As Rush Limbaugh and many others remind us fairly often, since the 2010 midterm election, the Democratic party has lost over 1,200 elected seats nationwide, from D.C. to governorships and state legislatures. Currently they control only five (count ’em, five) states from top to bottom compared to something in the mid-30s for the GOP (the rest are split). Why did this happen? The Unaffordable Do-Not-Care Act, that’s why. This unpopular, ruinous piece of legislative dreck has brought devastation not only to the health insurance industry and the economy but also to the political party whose lifelong ambition it was. They passed it without a syllable of Republican support, using tactics that should have rendered the whole thing unConstitutional, in the dead of night on either Christmas or New Year’s Eve, and the thing about the left is, they knew damned well what they were doing. They knew this was a huge gamble that was likely to cost them dearly. They put all their chips on this because to them the investment would pay off. They are quite literally all-in. If Her Passing-Out-Drunk-Is-All-That-Is-Inevitableness had won the election, they’d be well on their way to solidifying their hold on every institution in this country and subtly but surely rendering dissent impossible if not outright illegal. They bet the farm on this and as long as it stands they haven’t lost yet. They still have their great socialist leap forward, like Khan clutching the Genesis device firing controls with his mangled and bloody hand as he is surrounded by the bodies of his followers. They paid a dear price for it and they will not in any way assist in destroying it. The fact that it will be difficult and painful to root out is their last bastion.
Whatever comes out of the RepubliCare first attempt debacle, it should and must be clear that trying to come up with a “bipartisan” bill to get Democratic support is a fool’s errand. Instead of badmouthing the Freedom Caucus for doing what the entire GOP pledged to do, they ought to be in the driver’s seat. Forget what you can get some Democrats to maybe possibly sign on to, the truth is they never will. Draft a bill that will have the Freedom Caucus standing up and cheering and triple-dog-dare Chuck Schumer to stop it, then go nuclear and primary people like Susan Collins if they get in the way. To the Democrats, this is the brink of extinction. The stakes are win or die. Don’t expect them to help.