Monday, August 24, 2015

Last Call For Repeal And Misplace

So whatever happened to the 2016 GOP presidential candidates repealing Obamacare and replacing it with something super awesome?  Well, you see, that would mean taking away health insurance from millions of Republicans who don't want to admit that the law has helped them, and the 2016 clown car crew doesn't want to admit that either.

Just before Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal revealed his plan to replace ObamaCare last year, he sat down with 15 of Washington’s top conservative healthcare wonks to discuss it. They didn’t approve. 
“Near the end, they said, ‘You make a good point, but what you’ve put forward, we just don’t think it’s politically viable,’” Jindal’s long-time adviser Curt Anderson recalled in an interview this week. 
To his surprise, he said the group agreed the next GOP nominee couldn’t entirely roll back ObamaCare for fear of losing votes from millions already with coverage. In other words, even ObamaCare’s toughest critics say that parts of the law are here to stay
The 2016 election will mark the first time Republicans will be running against Obamacare since its biggest pieces have gone into effect, including billions of dollars of subsidies that have helped millions to gain coverage. 
Already, GOP strategists are getting heartburn about how to fight against ObamaCare without turning away those who are benefitting. 
“Obviously the biggest risk is being perceived as being the Grinch who stole someone’s healthcare,” said Josh Withrow, legislative affairs manager for the conservative group Freedom Works. 
“We should be focusing on the fact that healthcare is too expensive. I know it’s not as easy a message to sell as, ‘We’re going to make sure everyone has a plan, but it’s an attempt that has to be made,” he added. 
It’s a particularly tough test for a party that remains bitterly divided about how to replace the healthcare law even five years after its passage. 
Many in the GOP believe that healthcare offerings in 2016 need to offer specific sweeteners for voters already reaping rewards from ObamaCare. But others, led by Jindal, are outraged by anything that might resemble ObamaCare. 
It’s like the Republican party is basically saying, ‘Well we lost on this, we’ll just come up with our own entitlement program and we’ll run it better.’ They think it’s too late,” Anderson said.

Hey idiots?

You actually did lose this battle.  You lost it four times now, in fact: once when the ACA was passed, once when President Obama was overwhelmingly re-elected, and twice more when you tried to kill the law in the Supreme Court.

But you lost every time.  And it's over.  Deal with it.

In Which Zandar Answers Your Burning Questions

The Atlantic's Molly Ball asks:

Can the Republican Party Survive Trump?

Dear Molly:

As long as Democrats refuse to vote in midterm and local elections, the Republican party can and will survive anything. Even Trump.

Here endeth the lesson.

Merry Chris Mess, Christie

Chris Christie's big re-election win in 2013 as a Republican governor in a blue state was, according to the Village Idiots, proof that he would be the man to beat in 2016.  But a funny thing happened on the way to the White House.

Chris Christie, the voluble New Jersey governor, is once again facing the possibility that he might be relegated to the junior varsity debate — and rival Republican campaigns and outside observers say his window to re-enter the top tier of presidential candidates is closing fast.

Wednesday night’s scene in New Hampshire showed the daunting challenge ahead of Christie. As CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC covered Trump’s first town hall live — breaking only to run clips of Jeb Bush attacking the real estate tycoon — Christie was gasping for air on C-SPAN. Because the governor’s dimly lit event — a town hall at a restaurant outside of Manchester — was outdoors, the few viewers watching saw the candidate gradually disappear into darkness. The next day’s headlines duly focused on the Jeb-Donald contretemps, ignoring Christie’s play for a state he has made central to his fading White House hopes.

“He’s just not getting the traction that I think he was expecting,” said Andy Seale, the former chairman of the Republican Party in Hillsborough County, New Hampshire.

Christie has become such an also-ran that the Associated Press and the New York Times recently reassigned reporters dedicated to covering Christie — Jill Colvin and Kate Zernike — to other beats.

Then there are the polls.

If current trends hold, the New Jersey governor will likely lose his spot in the primetime CNN/Reagan Library debate on Sept. 16, displaced by a surging Carly Fiorina. As of mid-day Thursday, Christie was in 11th place among GOP presidential contenders in the RealClearPolitics average of national polls — behind Trump, Bush, Ben Carson, Gov. Scott Walker, Sen. Marco Rubio, Sen. Ted Cruz, Fiorina, Sen. Rand Paul, Gov. John Kasich, and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee.

On Tuesday, a new CNN/ORC poll found Christie in 11th place, with only 3 percent support among registered GOP voters. (A separate POLITICO analysis of the five most recent national polls that would factor into who would appear for the main debate finds Christie tied with Kasich for 10th place. For now.)

And with Trump owning the Straight Talk vote, said former New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean, there’s little Christie can do to claw his way back.

“We’re all living in Trump world,” said Kean. “And Trump world is something none of these political gurus or any of these guys conceived of when they [started] running their campaigns.”

It's easy to blame Hurricane PMURT for Christie's self-destruction, but nowhere in this Politico article do we see the word "bridge", as in Bridgegate, the scandal that basically killed the Christie campaign in 2014.

Hell, I've counted Christie out since 2013.  He's an awful candidate outside New Jersey.

And now, two years later, even Politico knows he's done.


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