2014 Mid-terms High Risk Poker

It doesn’t look at this point like President Obama’s coattails will provide many Congress members seeking election any guaranteed help.  His strongest supporters have never wavered but they are a minority anyways.  The great middle that elected him in 2008 and again in 2012 do not feel the pull to get out and vote Democrat.  It is less they indorse the GOP but given the President as the head Democrat, they feel little motivation.

That is not good news for anyone.  The GOP sees sunlight in the Senate races and can envision picking up enough Senate seats to gain control.  At this point, the House is almost certainly going to remain GOP controlled.  And given the GOP performance since 2010, that’s not good news for the nation.

Smart money would argue that the GOP should act statesmen-like now, and in November 2014, humbly ask for America’s vote so they can govern.  That strategy would bring the GOP into power across the Congressional board.

Instead, the GOP has selected a different strategy.  They are betting the mortgage upon the American electorate believing the Affordable Care Act is both poor legislation and will lessen the overall quality of American healthcare.  Consequently the House has voted 40 times to repeal or defund Obamacare.  Hmmm.

The most pressing question now is, what to do about the looming fights over the budget and any increase in the national debt.

Republican Majority Leader Eric Cantor has just announced that the House will kick the budget can down the street (for a couple of months) until mid December.  But extending the limits on the debt, that is another story.  Cantor said the GOP would be willing to raise the debt limit providing the President delays implementing the Affordable Care Act.  Two totally unrelated issues.   Hmmm.

This is a deal the President can (and should) refuse.  President Obama has already said he will not negotiate over increasing the debt limits but his track record on liking to negotiate at the last minutes gives reason to pause.  But refuse he must.

Default and an ensuing Government shutdown will follow.

There is mounting evidence that already the Affordable Care Act is not the disaster Republicans have claimed.  Costs have not gone through the roof (they have not come down either).  And despite Republican State Governors efforts to block key Obamacare provisions, it seems like most Americans will experience more than satisfactory healthcare (especially those currently without).  These Americans will ask, “what were those Republicans talking about?”

So the high rollers are getting ready to bet the mortgage and risk shutting down the government when the debt limit is reached.  If the President has any sense, he will ensure that GOP States will suffer the first loss of services and Republican friendly industries like Defense and Energy are hit too.  As the postal service slows and national parks close, and, and, and, Americans will conclude the GOP is not fit to govern.

The President ought ask one question…  Mr Boehner, Mr Canter, what are your proposals to replace the Affordable Care Act and how will you fund it?

If the GOP wants to govern, then the responsible way is to adjust the budget (and accept the consequences).  For many reason, the GOP has refused to follow that course previously.  At this late hour, it does not look like they will this time.

 

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