Obamacare

Senate Moves Forward With Votes to Keep Funding Obamacare

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credit: Gage Skidmore / Foter / CC BY-SA

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tx.) spoke out against Obamacare on the Senate floor for more than 21 hours yesterday and today. That makes it the fourth longest filibuster-like speech in Senate history. It was the capstone, at least so far, to a long push by Cruz to defund the health law through a continuing resolution (CR) to fund the government when its current funding expires at the end of the month. 

But the all-night effort doesn't appear to have been enough to change the outcome that seemed unavoidable from the start—that the Obamacare defunding language would be stripped from the funding bill by the Senate's Democratic leadership and sent back to the House.

The upper chamber just voted 100-0 to advance the CR and proceed with the inevitable, a vote that, as Politico explains, sets up "a series of votes that ultimately will send the spending bill back to the House without the health care provision after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) strips it out." 

Here's what comes next: Over the next few days, the Senate will go forward with votes that, unless Democrats unexpectedly break ranks, lead to the CR being sent back to the House with funding for Obamacare in place. It's likely that the House will get that bill on Monday. That's just a few hours before the current funding for the federal government ends.

The big question is what House Republicans do at that point.

With very little time left on the clock, the GOP-controlled lower chamber will probably have to either pass the Senate-edited CR, or allow the government to shut down at least briefly. Polls suggest the public is wary of a full federal shutdown in response to Obamacare, but some Republicans seem to think they can win politically should a shutdown occur. It's also conceivable that House Speaker John Boehner, who had initially tried to avoid an aggressive shutdown showdown over defunding the health law, might proceed with a vote on a CR that funds Obamacare over the objections of some House Republicans, and pass the funding bill with the help of Democratic votes. 

Update: National Review's Robert Costa reports that it's likely that the House will pass a one-week CR in order to avoid a shutdown and create additional time to negotiate. The idea is getting traction, according to Costa, because conservatives think it might force the White House to make a deal that perhaps included some concessions on Obamacare. It's not clear what pressure that would put on the administration, or why the White House would soften its negotiating stance during that week, but we'll see. 

NEXT: Senate Unanimously Calls for Cloture to Proceed on Temporary Spending Bill

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  1. THE BEATINS WILL CONTINUE UNTIL MORALE IMPROVES!

    FREE SHIT FOR ALL…

    Or something.

  2. This whole thing may be a hit on Boehner.

    Put him in a position where he has to “proceed with a vote on a CR that funds Obamacare over the objections of some House Republicans by passing the funding bill with the help of Democratic votes” and then take him out after he does.

    Bring on Speaker Amash!

    By the way, Reason needs to do a special article about Peter King calling Cruz an asshole for filibustering.

    1. This whole thing has been so enlightening. The country owes Cruz a great debt. He has shown a light on Washington and let the entire country know just exactly who supports Obmaacare and who doesn’t. Thanks to Cruz, we now know for sure where King and various other R reprobates stand.

    2. By the way, Reason needs to do a special article about Peter King calling Cruz an asshole for filibustering.

      Hey! Show your next TEAM Red president some goddamn respect!

      Peter King: Because it’s his turn.

      1. So he’s not just an asshole, he’s a delusional asshole.

        1. I’m pretty sure that if King wins the Presidency, the (Irish) terrorists will have won.

  3. It’s also conceivable that House Speaker John Boehner, who had initially tried to avoid an aggressive shutdown showdown over defunding the health law, might proceed with a vote on a CR that funds Obamacare over the objections of some House Republicans by passing the funding bill with the help of Democratic votes.

    Boehner cave? who could ever believe such a thing.

    1. But he’d cry while doing it.

  4. 100-0. So Cruz voted for cloture on the very bill he spent 21 hours “filibustering.”

    The fuck, Washington?

    1. This was the one to cut off debate on invoking cloture on it, I think?

      So, next up would be the cloture vote, which would be the one that matters (60 to cut off debate). After that, it’s straight 50 for Reid’s amendment, and straight 50 for up-or-down, I believe.

    2. This wasn’t a cloture vote for the CR. It was some other procedural advancement vote. The Politico piece I linked makes it clear that the cloture vote won’t happen until this weekend.

      But Cruz has made good on his pledge to use “every procedural tool” to slow down progress of the bill on Wednesday, but yielded the floor at noon ahead of the 1 p.m. procedural vote. Cruz also asked Reid on Wednesday to schedule a critical vote to end debate on Friday afternoon to allow the maximum amount of American viewers to watch. Otherwise that vote would take place on Saturday.
      “The best chance to defeat cloture on the bill is to have it in view of the American people,” Cruz said. “Friday afternoon a lot more people are going to pay attention.”
      Cruz’s tactics were the subject of an all Republican senators meeting Tuesday, as the GOP weighed how best to tactically approach their handling of the spending bill. Some senators believed it was best to stop grinding down the gears of the Senate’s procedural machinery.

      http://www.politico.com/story/…..z2fvmHUEYF

  5. The big question is what House Republicans do at that point.

    After having the Dem supporting media screaming bloody murder that the GOP would shut down the govt to stop OCare, they can just sit back and let the Dems take 100% responsibility for the clusterfuck of its implementation. Thanks to the idiot media doing their idiot thing, all the low information voters now know they opposed the damn thing.

    “Romulans. So predictably treacherous!” – Weyoun, 2375

    1. Yes. I would have some fun and pass a few CRs that defunded Obamacare but had all kinds of liberal ponies and make the Dems in the Senate say no. But then I would give them a CR that funded Obamacare but contained something that their base hates but the public either supports or doesn’t care about, Keystone is a good candidate, and let them suck that hind tit and try to explain why they are still unwilling to open the government even though they got what they said they wanted.

      1. There you go again, expecting Republicans to have principles.

  6. So the Best Congress Evvah will own the Obamacare that rolls out next week. Good luck with that.

    I make passing checks of the establishment progressive sites in the mornings and I’m seeing an interesting trend in what they call a “Win” for Obamacare:”Cheaper Than Expected”
    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/d…..n-expected
    That is, those horror stories from the notoriously right wing NYTimes, WashPost and Congressional Budget Office were WRONG (by 5-20%). So just 80% of the insane prices for insurance that you are forced to buy from the President’s cronies. But remember, if things work right (via Federal IT contractors best efforts) you might get a subsidy check to help you with that insurance payment – sometime next June.

    Anal rape – Gentler that expected.

    1. Yeah, I also noticed the spin on liberal sites like Slate and Huffington Post. Huffington Post in particular kept emphasizing the subsides that need to be accounted for while burying the fact that employed people with good insurance will pay more across the board.

      1. and who pays for the subsidies?

        1. Rich people paying their fair share!

          //HuffPo progtard

      2. the spin is also evident on the mainstream – check out yahoo or even the Detroit Free Press. ONLY $380! It’s CHEAP!

    2. Those stories are killers. It is going to cost you more but not as much more as we thought. Gee, I feel so much better now.

      They are pretty desperate for spin if that is the best they can do.

      1. The missing part too, is the primary reason why they aren’t even more expensive is because the policies in the exchanges generally have smaller provider networks that were done in order to attempt to reduce their appeal to people who use doctors often.

        Essentially the insurance companies are trying to find ways to get around community rating.

        Who would have thunk it? Rational actors try to get around price controls.

    3. That’ll be awesome…

      Prog: “It’s so expensive, I couldn’t afford it! So now I have to pay the penaltax!”

      SweatingGin: “At least you have insurance now! Praise be to Obamacare!”

      Prog: “I DON’T! It’s too expensive and now I have to pay a tax!”

      SweatingGin: “And you’ve got a subsidy check! It’s great! I’m so glad it gave you insurance!”

  7. Having made their point, they should just let the law go into effect. The campaign material for 2014 and 2016 writes itself: show video of the Shitweasel-in-Chief promising that if you like your insurance you can keep it and contrast it with testimonials from Americans who’ve been fucked over by Obamacare and had their premiums raised, their coverage altered, and their doctors turn away from their plans.

    1. Only after the Senate has a roll call vote on the CR that funds it. Every Senator should have to go on record allowing this thing to happen.

    2. But the only thing that can fix problems with a government program are bigger government programs.

      1. This. The State is a tide that never recedes.

        1. It recedes. It did in Canada and it will in America.

          1. I seem to recall that it did in Rome once, too. I think that was right before the Dark Ages, but history gets a little blurry right around then.

  8. OT:

    DEA – All Your Pharmacy Records Are Belong To Us

    In its latest brief, the DEA ignores these points and instead argues that the mere fact that our clients’ prescription records are held in a database maintained by a third party?the State of Oregon?means that they have somehow given up their privacy interest in the records.

    1. The government forced you to turn over your records to a third party. And since you turned them over to a third party, you have no expectation of privacy anymore.

      Wow.

      1. I’ve come to the conclusion that the DEA is the worst of the worst of all the government agencies. They have no consideration, no compassion, no restraint, and no compunctions. They abuse the power of every other agency in the government to get their way and without any repercussions at all.

        1. Which is why, when I rise to power, every employee of the DEA, from head to mailroom clerk, is going to be executed using the boats.

      2. The government forced you to turn over your records to a third party. And since you turned them over to a third party, you have no expectation of privacy anymore.

        The same argument dunphy made when he boasted about strongarming pharmacies into giving out medical information to make drug busts.

        1. Remember, Obamacare is going to make all medical records electronic and available to all sorts of government agencies. Good luck making an “expectation of privacy” argument there.

          I really hate that doctrine. What is “reasonable” changes based on what everyone but you thinks.

          1. And let’s be frank, you think Obama releasing sealed probate court records of his political enemies was bad, just wait until they have access to your history of STD’s, your wife’s anxiety meds, your kids broken bones (were they caused by abuse)?

            Contemplating the Obama administration, I am starting to understand why Twain lost his shit over Teddy Roosevelt. The presidency and most of the government are being run by utter madmen.

            1. Exactly. And Obama has millions of followers like shreek and Tony who will think that is great and have no problem with it. This is the new normal. And worse, it will only go one way. If a Republican tries to fight back it will be a scandal and a felony. But Dems will do it with impunity and every petty local government thug will too.

              1. America needs to be ‘unbundled’ at this point. Unity was a good thing until the end of the Cold War.

  9. Young consumers in many states will be offered rates that are lower than some initial forecasts, but still significantly higher than they may be used to seeing, on health-insurance exchanges run either entirely or in part by the federal government. New federal requirements will require carriers to price insurance equally regardless of consumers’ medical history or gender and will offer more generous coverage and more benefits than current plans may offer. Compare insurance premiums for the lowest-cost ‘bronze’ plan for a 27-year-old single person with the current lowest-cost option for a man in a metro area in 36 states where the federal government will oversee exchanges.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/…..nteractive

    Oh the cost of being a part of history. Have fun you under 30s. I hope the pleasure of voting for a real black man for President was worth it.

    1. Unfortuantely most of them are either on their parents insurance or uninsured so when they get around to buying insurance they won’t know the difference. They’ll know it’s expensive but that’ll be the fault of libertarians or something.

      1. 26 comes mighty fast. When they hit 27 and are forced to pay a tax because they are too poor to buy insurance, the whaling and gnashing of teeth will be quite entertaining.

        1. Unless their “earned” income credit more than covers it. They’ll still take a hit which will cause some bitching but if they still get a refund check which most probably will that will buffer some of that anguish. When they get older and start actually having to pay taxes than they’ll figure it out. And they’ll e bitching about those clueless 20 somethings voting for bigger government.

        2. “whaling and gnashing of teeth”

          I love your typos, they evoke such surreal images.

  10. The Government Business Spiral

    1. Notice someone making a living in a market unattended by their betters
    2. Regulate
    3. Regulation introduces unfairness and inequity into the market
    4. Condemn said inequity
    5. Repeat steps 2 thru 4 ad infinitum

    1. I would say “fair” has to be one of the words I hate the most.

    2. 6. Subsidize said market after it ceases to be profitable

  11. Obamacare High Medical Bills Tax: Before Obamacare, Americans facing high medical expenses were allowed a deduction to the extent that those expenses exceeded 7.5 percent of adjusted gross income (AGI). Obamacare now imposes a threshold of 10 percent of AGI. Therefore, Obamacare not only makes it more difficult to claim this deduction, it widens the net of taxable income.

    Read more: http://atr.org/obama-obamacare…..z2fvumkM16
    Follow us: @taxreformer on Twitter

    Progressives, making sure people have to pay their taxes before they can pay their medical bills.

    But remember, Obama cares about you. If there is bigger proof of the inherent stupidity of modern American than the fact that tens of millions of Americans actually think the Democrats care about them, I don’t know what it would be.

    1. More importantly for more people, I suspect, the Flex Spending Account contribution limits were reduced by Obamacare to $2500 per year. Most employer plans that I am aware of were allowing $5,000 per year. Not sure if that was a legal limit, or not.

      That’s a particular hit to people with families. I mean, a single person would rarely need to set aside more than $2500 tax-free dollars for healthcare spending. A family of four needs more than that.

      Again, the irony is striking. The silence from the media on these points is deafening.

      1. The silence from the media on these points is deafening.

        I’m sure they wouldn’t understand even if you bothered to point it out. People with a firm grasp on finance don’t typically gravitate towards journalism.

  12. They need to negotiate a clean two-week CR and then let the IT debacle take place on Oct. 1 and run a couple weeks, while fanning the media flames with stories about the messed up exchanges. Then let Obama and the Dems defend those screwed up exchanges while negotiating a longer CR extension that defunds Obamacare.

  13. I’m still not understanding why this isn’t a filibuster. Wasn’t he delaying the vote to move forward on a vote? Also, isn’t the definition of a filibuster any kind of delay tactic? I personally would call this a filibuster, though I don’t really understand his point in doing it he should get the credit.

    1. A fillibuster is to prevent a vote from happening because leadership isn’t allowed to bring up a vote until a senator is done speaking. This wasn’t one because it’s a different procedure. Redit could have just scheduled a vote if he wanted to over Cruz and forced him to sit down.

  14. I am reading this and shake my head at this article and most of you commenting on this are very uninformed. Indy they passed the bill to defund obamacare not to keep funding it.

  15. you might get a subsidy check to help you with that insurance payment – sometime next June.

    is that how it works? the same people who will starve if their food stamps are cut by $50 a month will cover their own full premiums until whenever and then get a check that they’ll spend on other stuff within 24 hours? even the government can’t be that stupid.

  16. He did the right thing. The voice he gave in opposition is important for tomorrow, not for today. Ideas must be presented and debated or forced on the country. Obamacare sucks. It came into being as a budget reconciliation bill.what BS. It hasn’t been written yet. As we are finding out every day.
    Cruz is right. Opposition to him is wrong. Failure in the immediacy is not the important factor. The intended and un intended consequences of this Administration bite everyone in the Butt. Only Obama gets to change a law that only the congress can by law – Constitutionally. When will this bull Shit end. Who will stand up to this miscreant POTUS ?

  17. He did the right thing. The voice he gave in opposition is important for tomorrow, not for today. Ideas must be presented and debated or forced on the country. Obamacare sucks. It came into being as a budget reconciliation bill.what BS. It hasn’t been written yet. As we are finding out every day.
    Cruz is right. Opposition to him is wrong. Failure in the immediacy is not the important factor. The intended and un intended consequences of this Administration bite everyone in the Butt. Only Obama gets to change a law that only the congress can by law – Constitutionally. When will this bull Shit end. Who will stand up to this miscreant POTUS ?

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