Boehner Vows Republicans Will Do 'Everything We Can' to Repeal Obamacare

By Matt Cover | November 3, 2010 | 4:02pm EDT

House Republican leader John Boehner of Ohio pauses as he takes questions on the sweeping GOP victory in the 2010 midterm elections, during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2010. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

( – House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) hinted that House Republicans may try to use the upcoming appropriations process to de-fund President Obama’s health care "reform" law.

Boehner, answering questions at a post-election press conference at the Capitol on Wednesday, was asked whether he would use the upcoming budget process to deprive the government of the funding necessary to implement the health care provisions.

Boehner said that the new GOP House majority will do “everything we can” to repeal and replace the unpopular law.

“I believe that the health care bill that was enacted by the current Congress will kill jobs in America, ruin the best health care system in the world, and bankrupt our country. That means that we have to do everything we can to try to repeal this bill and replace it with commonsense reforms that will bring down the cost of health insurance.”

Because Congress has not passed a single appropriations bill for fiscal year 2011, which actually began Oct. 1, it will have to take them up during both the upcoming lame-duck session and the inaugural session of the newly elected Congress, where Boehner presumably will lead a Republican-dominated House.

Federal spending bills originate in the House and must be approved by the House in order to become law, giving Boehner and the GOP a prime opportunity to use the appropriations bills--particularly for the Health and Human Services Department--to starve the reform effort of funding.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) called ObamaCare a “metaphor” for the types of bad policies the Obama administration and the Democrat-led Congress had foisted on the American people.

“The health care bill in my view was sort of a metaphor for the government excess that we witnessed over the last two years,” McConnell said in his opening statement. “The American people watched the government running banks, insurance companies, car companies, taking over the student loan business, and then they said ‘now they’re taking my health care as well’ and I think it just became a tipping point during the course of the last two years.”

McConnell may get his own opportunity to try to de-fund ObamaCare when the appropriations bills come to the Senate.

While not in the majority, there are substantially more Republicans in the Senate, meaning that while the Democrats will still technically control the upper chamber, filibusters and other delaying tactics will be easier to sustain, making controversial bills--such as one that fully funds health care reform--more difficult to pass.

Republican senators have another advantage over their House counterparts: the ability of each senator to offer amendments on the floor of the Senate. House bills normally come to the floor under strict rules that prohibit or greatly restrict amendments. In the Senate however, any senator may offer an amendment on the floor, giving Republicans multiple opportunities to try to partially or fully de-fund the reform.

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