Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 10, 2016

Individual Mandate Delay to Be House’s Next Volley (Updated)

Updated 4:24 p.m. | House Republicans will attempt to re-amend a stopgap spending bill with a one-year delay of Obamacare’s individual mandate and a provision eliminating health benefits for members of Congress and their staff, Rep. Darrell Issa of California said today.

The move will be the House’s third attempt to get the Senate to agree to legislation that would undermine the president’s signature health care law. The House is expected to vote sometime tonight, but members cautioned it could be a late vote. The Senate voted earlier today to table, or kill, the House’s amendments designed to delay the entire Obamacare law for a year and repeal a medical device tax. Last week, the Senate voted to strip the House-passed continuing resolution of amendments that would defund implementation of the health care law.

After emerging from a 2 p.m. GOP Conference meeting, Rep. Bill Shuster, R-Pa., cautioned that the conference is not as united behind the newest plan as it was when leaders proposed on Saturday to delay the entire law for a year.

Shuster said members “overwhelmingly” support the newest plan, but he noted, “there are definitely some members who disagree with it.”

Former Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, for example, said he could support the plan — but just barely.

“Well, [it’s] keeping some of the harmful effects of Obamacare from being imposed on our constituents, so that’s a step in the right direction,” Jordan said. “And it’s respecting the rule of law, which is another important concept, obviously, with what it does for the member subsidy issue. And it keeps the government running.”

Asked how close Republican were to offering a plan that conservatives couldn’t support, Jordan said leadership was “real close.”

“This is reasonable, and if the Senate can’t take this, I don’t know what else there is to offer,” he said.

Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla. — a close ally of Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio — said he thinks “the conference is actually very united on this.”

He added, “It shows we’re not for Congress getting a special deal [on health care], and we’re not for the American people being stuck, you know, when everybody else is getting off, like big business.”

House Republicans also reiterated their contention that the Senate will be blamed for any government shutdown that occurs at midnight.

Rep. Michael C. Burgess, R-Texas, complained that the Senate was not compromising on the issue of Obamacare.

“It’s hard to negotiate with someone who doesn’t want to negotiate with you, and that’s the position we’re in right now.”

And he disputed the notion that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., had the advantage in the current shutdown showdown. Burgess noted that the Senate may be hard-pressed to vote against the amendment removing health benefits for members and their staff.

“I don’t think he’s got the advantages and again, we’ll send him some political kryptonite and see what he does with it,” Burgess said.


  • susierosie

    The GOP obviously want a shutdown. How sad and pathetic the GOP are becoming.

    • umreb78

      Your statement is bullcrap. Reid and the Dems in the Senate could have easily avoided the shutdown merely by voting on the CR delaying OC for one year….Delaying for one year the implementation of a law that is opposed by anywhere from 61 to 68 percent of the American public depending on which poll you want to use. Dems (and commentors like the one above)….how sad and pathetic they are becoming…but let’s not confuse them with facts. Not to mention the fact that as reported by the Regime’s Propaganda Wing, the NYT’s, the Dems and Harry Reid want a shutdown to finally take away the power from the TEA Party Republicans”.

      • tpaine1

        How wrong they are. The Tea Party “fiscal conservatives” will only get stronger in the Senate. BIG mistake Senate Democrats.

        • umreb78

          tpaine…you are SO more right than you even know…HUGE announcements in several states coming very soon!!!! Keep the faith

    • politicalcynic

      Funny-seems the GOP keeps offering more proposals. Seems the Democrats keep rejecting them with no other offers. Funny….that doesn’t sound much like negotiation to me.

      • tpaine1

        Harry Reid: “I will not compromise.” Barrack Obama: “I will not negotiate.” And you wonder where the Democrats “compromise” offer is??

        • CT14

          The compromise was the sequester that is still in place.

          The PPACA is law and has been found constitutional. The only way to stop it would be to repeal it, and the tea party does to have the votes.

          If you don’t have the votes, you move on to do what you can wit the next piece of legislation. You don’t refuse to do your job and shut down the government.

          That is hostage taking and a violation of their oaths to uphold the Constitution.

          Make no mistake, there is a Senate bill for a clean CR in Boehner’s hands right now. 20 moderate Repubicans have already said they would sign it, which is more than needed.

          It’s simply Boehner fear of the tea party that keeps him from bringing it to the floor and ending the shutdown. This is on Boehner.

          • tpaine1

            The “individual mandate” was found unconstitutional by the Supreme Court so I don’t know what you’re talking about. Obama himself has altered the law 19 times. This is no different. The concept of a new welfare entitlement run by the government is, on it’s face, ridiculous. WE’RE BROKE. WE CAN’T AFFORD IT.
            The House GOP is doing EXACTLY what we elected them to do – balance the federal budget.
            White House thinks it’s “winning” according to them. Senate Democrats want to talk about anything but the ObamaCare Tax next year and are using this to “gin up” their base.
            Obama and the Democrats want this shutdown. Don’t be fooled – they’ve used this tactic 10 times in the last forty years. GOP needs to make sure they never want another one.

    • tpaine1

      To what purpose? It’s the Senate Democrats that want the shutdown. Would you want nothing to talk about next year except the by then even more hated ObamaCare Tax.

  • Jeremy Nixon

    Wouldn’t stripping the employer contribution from members of Congress be a pay cut in violation of the 27th Amendment?

    • CincinnatiRIck

      Get smart….benefits are NEVER part of salary. Is your healthcare benefit taxed as income? Duh!

  • esquire1072

    I’m confused – was I mistakenly under a mis-guided notion, that the current state of the law already, was-that members of Congress and their staff already are going to-be required to forgo FEHBP benefits /instead obtain their insurance coverage from one of the D.C.-Metropolitan-Area / one of their Home-States’ Health Exchanges?
    In other words, I don’t understand what’s Rep. Issa’s “[…] and a provision eliminating health benefits for members […]” is all about?

    • CincinnatiRIck

      President Obama, at Harry Reid’s insistence, waived that provision of the law. It seems that he is willing to battle to the death to prevent a one year delay for ordinary Americans but he’s perfectly OK about waiving it for Congress and big business.

      • tpaine1

        And the unions and the entire federal workforce!! Go figure.

  • pitch1934

    A thought on the ACA. I am not happy with it. Why? Because I believe that health care reform should be single payer, a la medicare. Now, does that add me to the people who are against the ACA? See how easy it is to get figures skewed.

  • tpaine1

    No budget from Senate Democrats = Continuing Resolution = government shutdown.
    Obama: “I will not negotiate.” Reid: “I will not compromise.” = government shutdown.
    Obama plays golf, Harry and Senate Democrats go home for weekend and only the House GOP works through the weekend to avoid a government shutdown = government shutdown.
    Who cares. Just Democrats who want ANYTHING to talk about other than the hated ObamaCare Tax.

    • CT14

      Reid offered to conference 18 times, only to be turned down.

      Tea party politicians are all over the place on tape about how gleeful they are to shut down the government. Claim it’s a Dem shutdown all you want, but. The video is their to prove you wrong.

      As is the senate bill for a clean CR lying in Boehner’s hands. Bring it to the floor, all the Dems and 20 republicans vote for it–presto–government reopened with time for committees and conferences without threatening the economy.

      • tpaine1

        What are YOU talking about?? Reid JUST turned down the Conference.

        • CT14

          Yes, he did, because they need to be responsible and fund the government. Pass a clean CR and then there’s time for a conference.

          I’m talking about how for months Reid tried to conference with the GOP and they refused over and over because they wanted the shut down.

          The tea party represents 18% of the country. The 80 representatives simply do not have the votes to repeal the PPACA, they’ve tried and failed 41 times. So now they are shutting down the government-holding it hostage-in order to try to force a minority opinion on the nation.

          They are running one half of one third of the government. Our Founding Fathers never intended for a small faction to control the nation. All Boehner has to do is bring the Senate’s bill to the floor and it will pass.

          This is the GOP shutdown. Use your Google-fu and you will find dozens of interviews and video clips of republicans happily talking about shutting down the government–a violation of their oath of office–as a good thing.

          The PPACA passed. It was signed into law. It was declared constitutional. There is -nothing- to negotiate about it. They might as well be asking to defund Medicare or Social Security (which I expect they will do) for all the authority they have.

          They need to pass a law to repeal it with a veto-proof majority. They do not have the votes to do that, and those who do have decided they won’t be bullied by those who would kill our economy because they can’t legally and democratically get their way.

          • tpaine1

            I recalled no offer by the Senate Democrats to “conference” and google can’t find one either!! Want to give me a source?
            ObamaCare has a life span of exactly one second after the GOP retakes control of the Congress – probably next year.
            Aside from that, it will die a “death from a thousand cuts” in court just like McCain-Feingold before it.
            WE’RE BROKE. WE CAN’T AFFORD ANOTHER WELFARE ENTITLEMENT. The taxpayer’s cost are now out on “this nasty bit of socialism” is $3,000/parasite/yr FOR LIFE!! Paid for by people who have to pay for their own insurance.

Sign In

Forgot password?



Receive daily coverage of the people, politics and personality of Capitol Hill.

Subscription | Free Trial

Logging you in. One moment, please...