John Boehner on Thursday predicted a “big victory in the House” when lawmakers on Friday vote to continue funding the government while simultaneously defunding President Obama’s unpopular health-care law.
“We’ll pass a plan to protect the American people from the president’s health care law, while keeping the rest of government up and running,” Boehner said at a Capitol news conference. “When it comes to the health care law, the debate in the House has been settled. I think our position is very clear: The law is a train wreck, and it’s going to raise costs, it’s destroying American jobs — and it must go.”
After that House “victory,” Boehner said, “this fight will move over to the Senate – where it belongs.”
“I expect my Senate colleagues to be up for the battle,” he said.
Because Democrats have a majority in the Senate and control the White House, the legislation is not expected to go much farther.
The plan Republicans will vote on Friday, according to Boehner, would lock “sequester savings in” while defunding Obamacare. It would fund the government until the end of the year.
Over in the Senate, a number of conservative legislators — namely Ted Cruz of Texas, Mike Lee of Utah and Marco Rubio of Florida — have been arguing for a continuing resolution that funds the government but defunds Obamacare.
Boehner and the House GOP leadership had favored another approach to passing a continuing resolution, but were unable to get rank-and-file Republicans to get behind that.
Influential conservative groups often at odds with the GOP leadership offered support on Thursday to the continuing resolution.
“Despite our strong concern that House leaders are punting on the task of cutting spending to December, we believe defunding ObamaCare is the paramount issue for conservatives to support right now,” Club for Growth lobbyist Andy Roth told congressional offices on Thursday. “With enrollment starting on October 1 for the state exchanges, Congress must act quickly to bar funds for this disastrous law.”
Democrats, meanwhile, are accusing Republicans of wanting to shut down the government over the tactic — something Boehner and other Republicans vehemently deny.
“Tomorrow, the Republicans will hold their tea party continuing resolution,” House minority leader Nancy Pelosi said Thursday. “That tea party resolution is to shut down government.”