Former House Speaker and likely 2012 presidential candidate Newt Gingrich expects Obamacare to be fully repealed by March or April of 2013. That’s assuming a Republican wins the next election, because President Barack Obama wouldn’t sign a repeal if re-elected. Gingrich isn’t sure how the situation in the courts will play out.
At an event discussing the “pains” Obamacare has put the country through since it passed a year ago next Wednesday, Gingrich said he hopes House GOP leadership will defund Obamacare this year, adding that he supports Iowa Republican Rep. Steve King’s recommendation to put it in the Continuing Resolution (CR).
“I don’t see how they [the Obama administration] force the House to pass appropriations this year to implement the bill,” Gingrich said. “The president will have go to the country and say I’m now going to veto this bill on behalf of more spending for a bigger deficit with a bigger Washington bureaucracy for a bill you want repealed. I think that is a pretty losing political proposition for the president.”
Gingrich said that he doesn’t know if House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor will actually be able to defund the health care reform in the CR, which would fund the government through the end of the current fiscal year, because Gingrich is “not up there on a day to day basis.” But, he said, he does “know they are deeply committed to stopping the funding and stopping the implementation.”
“They’ve already passed, by a significant margin, repealing Obamacare. It’s obviously not going to get to the president – he would veto it,” Gingrich said. “So, he can block them from the solution – but, I don’t think he can coerce them into funding and I think that Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor are absolutely committed to refusing to fund the implementation of Obamacare.”
Gingrich told The Daily Caller “it’s a matter of weeks,” before the American people will see how far and how fast Boehner and Cantor are willing to push Obama.
“You all will know, by early April, how bold and how determined they are to fundamentally change things,” he told TheDC. “And, I think you are going to find that [Wisconsin Republican Rep.] Paul Ryan is going to produce a very, very bold budget.”
Visiting Heritage Foundation Fellow James Capretta and National Center for Policy Analysis President John Goodman joined Gingrich at the National Press Club event Friday morning to discuss the new powers the federal government granted itself through the health care reform, in addition to its unintended consequences and “pains.” Gingrich’s Center for Health Transformation (CHT) says Obamacare leads to 1,968 new and expanded grants of power to the federal government, most of which go to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, who is currently Kathleen Sebelius. CHT also points out that Obama’s health care reform has about 500 implementation deadlines with “downstream consequences,” it says are likely to be as “profound,” and affect every stakeholder in the healthcare industry, from doctors and nurses to patients and businesses.
“As former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said about a year ago, just before passage of the bill, that they had to pass it to find out what was in it, and I think people are finding out what’s in the bill and the more that is learned, the worse it gets,” Capretta said.
Goodman said during the last presidential election, “the most important issue was health care,” but not then-Sen. Barack Obama’s plans. “It was John McCain’s health plan,” Goodman said. He said the Republican plan was to give a tax credit to people who purchased health insurance or got coverage through their employers. Those who chose not to purchase health insurance wouldn’t get that tax break – and those extra funds would be used for whenever someone who was sick or needed urgent care but didn’t have insurance showed up in an emergency room.
“There is an alternative [to Obamacare],” Goodman said. “Republicans are a little skittish about trotting it out after the demagoguery in the last election but, if there were some serious effort on the part of both parties to go back to the bargaining table, we could have a much, much better health reform.”