The Conversation

ObamaCare and inevitable failure

In response to Why Would the Senate GOP Block a Vote on the Continuing Resolution?:

Of course, the media will forget to explain all this as they rush to print stories about the kwaaaaazy Repubwicans filibustering their own bill.  We talk about the media protecting Obama a lot, but it's simply astonishing how hard they work to protect Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who has quietly murdered huge stacks of good legislation without ever getting tagged as an "obstructionist" or master of "gridlock."  You can take it to the bank that he'd already be a figure of pop-culture parody if he were a Republican using procedural tricks as garrotes to strangle House Democratic legislation, especially if he was a corrupt, creepy, slander artist and gaffe machine like Reid.

I hear a lot of dejected talk that ObamaCare is now inevitable, the 2012 election was the last chance to stop it, we shouldn't waste time fighting it, etc.  (Some establishment Republicans are even taking steps to ensure this is a self-fulfilling prophecy, by helpfully dropping oppo-research stealth bombs on people like Ted Cruz.)  This is an absurd line of thinking.  The American people are not doomed forever because of one kickback-palooza and dead-of-night party-line vote.  We have the right, and the authority, to change or discard any government program that doesn't live up to its promises.  

But instead, we've heard talk for decades of how every program is eternal, no matter how badly it fails.  Every inch of ground the Left takes is theirs forever.  Liberty shrinks remorselessly, relentlessly, in a process that might occasionally be slowed by conservative electoral victories, but can never be reversed.  Of course the "progressives" love it when people think that way, but it's not clear to me why anyone else should adopt their world-view.

Whether or not the American electorate currently has the determination and self-respect to kill a boondoggle like ObamaCare is a separate question.  But they'll never find that inner fortitude without bold leadership from conservatives.  The people who think the private sector is too small must never stop making their point.  The public has to see that a realistic chance to escape from ObamaCare exists.  Even if today's effort fails, they might be willing to sign up for tomorrow's crusade - especially if parliamentary tricks are used to kill repeal legislation the public likes.  

The Left understands this.  They never stop pushing for what they want.  A failed bill today becomes a battle banner at the next rally.  Public opinion shifts slowly; the patience to sustain a crusade across multiple election cycles is vital.  We desperately need to change the current rules of political engagement, in which the Left can drag itself across the finish line, push a single bill through Congress, and irrevocably alter the nation.


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