Former U.S. Senator
Jim DeMint (R-S.C.)
(CNSNews.com) - During a conference call on Friday, conservative leaders from organizations including the Tea Party Patriots, Club for Growth, and ForAmerica, as well as former U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), demanded that Republicans in Congress completely repeal the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare.
“It is important to remember that our current situation with Obamacare, or the Affordable Care Act, is unsustainable,” said Senator DeMint. “Those who do have private insurance have very high deductibles.”
“Under the current situation, the private insurance market will probably not exist in five years,” he said.
DeMint, Tea Party Patriots President Jenny Beth Martin, Club for Growth Vice President Andy Roth, ForAmerica President David Bozell, and former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell argued that Republicans need to keep the promise they made to voters and vote on a full repeal of President Obama’s signature legislative achievement.
Other conservative leaders on the conference call, supporting that position, included Jason Pye, the director of public policy for FreedomWorks, Chip Roy, the director of the Center for the Tenth Amendment Action at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, Ken Cuccinelli, the former attorney general of Virginia, and Alina Grossu, director of the Center for Human Dignity at the Family Research Council.
“We still maintain that we want Obamacare, including the regulations, to be repealed,” said Jenny Beth Martin. “We understand what’s inside of Obamacare. We’ve studied the law, and we understand what true repeal is versus fake repeal.”
Andy Roth said the Senate’s current health care bill does not do enough to change Obamacare, and added that “moderate Republicans are very supportive of keeping in place large parts of Obamacare.”
“The Club for Growth strongly believes that we should put a full repeal bill, including all the regulations, on the Senate floor,” said Roth. “If we’re going to do repeal, it’s got to be a full repeal. All of it needs to go.”
The conservatives on the call also voiced their support for President Trump’s latest tweet on the issue. On Friday morning the president tweeted, “If Republican Senators are unable to pass what they are working on now, they should immediately REPEAL, and then REPLACE at a later date!”
FreedomWorks’ Jason Pye said that the conservative think tank “appreciates the president’s tweet this morning.”
Ken Cuccinelli commented that “it’s good to see the president joining us in the full repeal effort, at least at this stage.”
All who spoke agreed that, at the least, the amendments to the Senate health care bill proposed by Senators Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Mike Lee (R-Utah), and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) need to be considered.
ForAmerica President David Bozell expressed this view, saying the bill as it stands is a “liberal piece of legislation” and that “Republicans have lost their base with this bill.”
“At a minimum, the Cruz amendments, Lee proposals, need to be adopted,” said Bozell.
Former Senator DeMint shared Bozell’s sentiment.
“If we can't get the votes for the full repeal, the Cruz amendments would be a huge improvement over what we’ve seen so far, because it allows for a private insurance market to exist alongside a government plan,” said DeMint.
DeMint also wanted to clarify that a full repeal would not mean immediately throwing people off of their health care plans.
“When we speak of repeal, we’re talking about an unwinding of Obamacare and its regulations over a year or two -- no one is thrown off of their insurance,” said DeMint. “No one is thrown off of their insurance under a complete repeal bill.”
Ken Blackwell, former Secretary of State of Ohio. (Facebook.)