June 28, 2012
The Supreme Court Ruling to uphold Obamacare presents a challenge for conservatives.
But as Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) said when he spoke at Heritage this afternoon, the ruling “does present some options for us.” Conservatives will just have to pursue more unconventional options as they work towards repeal.
Heritage investigative reporter Lachlan Markay explains one way to push repeal:
Now that the Supreme Court has ruled that Obamacare’s health insurance mandate is in fact a tax levied on those who do not purchase insurance, Senate Republicans will look to repeal the full law through the budget reconciliation process.
A reconciliation process would only require a senate majority of 51 votes to repeal the law. Reconciliation is typically only used only for budget-related issues, but since the individual mandate has been deemed a tax, there is no reason Congress can’t repeal it if a majority votes against it.
Heritage vice president Mike Franc explains the details of reconciliation:
Now that the individual mandate has acquired the official constitutional status of a “tax”, there is no longer any doubt that the Congress, and more specifically the Senate, can repeal it pursuant to the simple majority vote threshold available under the Budget Act’s reconciliation process. Some Senate insiders were concerned that the reconciliation process would leave too much of Obamacare intact, including the individual mandate. But today’s decision, while alarming in so many other ways, dispels with that concern.
The mandate is now a revenue provision. Therefore, it is germane and not subject to a Senate parliamentary point of order to strike it from a repeal bill. The Senate’s filibuster process that would require a supermajority of 60 Senate votes to approve repeal is now irrelevant.
Can you think of another way to repeal Obamacare?