WASHINGTON, September 21, 2013 — The House of Representatives has passed a continuing resolution to keep the government running. The new CR does something conservatives have wanted for a very long time.
It defunds Obamacare.
House Speaker John Boehner came out to do a victory dance after the vote. He called the vote a “victory for common sense,” adding, “It’s time for us to say no.”
This bill sets up a potential government shut down. When it is sent over to the Senate, it is widely expected that the Democrats will strip out the provision that defunds Obamacare and send it back to the House of Representatives.
Boehner’s elation is ironic. Just a few weeks ago, he was telling everyone that the objective was not to shut the government down and that he was going to send a “clean” continuing resolution over to the Senate so the government could continue to run.
Earlier this month, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor was working on legislative chicanery that would have allowed the House to vote to defund Obamacare, yet allow the Senate to strip that out of the bill and be able to send it on to the White House instead of having to send it back to the House of Representatives.
The only reason this bill has gone forward with a real Obamacare defunding provision is because the Conservative wing of the House Republican Caucus revolted.
Boehner is as indecisive a leader as Obama. Boehner is the only person in Washington who leads from further behind than Obama. The only man in Washington less willing to fight than Barack Obama is John Boehner.
The Senate, at least on the first crack, is not going to defund Obamacare. Even if some Democrats defect, such as those up for reelection in red states, RINOs like John McCain and Lidsay Graham are almost certainly going to vote to fund Obamacare.
This bill will end up back in the House of Representatives.
Once that happens, the real question is whether the conservative wing of the Republican Caucus can force Boehner to fight.
Given his track record, conservatives should be very worried that Boehner will cut a deal to surrender in the face of a potential government shutdown. The truth is that Republicans win with a government shutdown. Republicans won the battle of the shut down in 1995 and 1996. Someone needs to remind Boehner of this.
For conservatives, this battle is nowhere near being over, but there is good news: If Boehner can be forced to fight, Vladimir Putin has shown us that Obama doesn’t like to fight, either.
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