NYT's Peters Hits 'Waste of Time' Obama-Care Repeal Votes and GOP's 'Myopic Focus' on Deficits
On Wednesday, New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters let the Republicans in Congress know he was tired of their silly attempts to repeal Obamacare in "House to Vote Yet Again On Health Care Repeal."
(Peters was last seen helping Chuck Hagel, Obama's nominee for Secretary of Defense limp across the confirmation finish line.) He wrote on Wednesday:
The 37th time won’t be the charm. But House Republicans are charging forward anyway this week on a vote to repeal President Obama’s signature health care overhaul, which will put the number of times they have tried to eliminate, defund or curtail the law past the three-dozen mark.
“This is what, the 40th time they’re going to do it?” scoffed Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the Democratic leader, confessing that she had lost count. “Thirty-eight? 39? 40? 41?” She eventually settled on “high 30s” as her best guess.
....since 2011, Republicans have spent no less than 15 percent of their time on the House floor on repeal in some way.
Liberals mock Republicans for what they dismiss as a waste of time. It represents a fitting ordering of priorities, they say, for a body whose few accomplishments this year include passing a bill that kept the Federal Helium Reserve open, heading off a critical shortage of the gas, and another that modifies the requirements for gold and silver coins commemorating the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Indeed, the Republican House leadership is sensitive to the perception that they are squandering even more time on a repeal vote that is going nowhere.
With the national debt at over $16 trillion, Peters accused the Republicans of suffering from "an almost myopic focus on deficit reduction and budgets."
Republican leadership put off scheduling a vote on an outright repeal of the health care law despite pleas from conservative members who believe it is an issue of paramount importance to voters back home. After losing the presidency and seats in both houses in Congress, the House leadership initially wanted to focus on pursuing an agenda crafted by Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia, the majority leader, aimed at softening the party’s image by moving off an almost myopic focus on deficit reduction and budgets.
They were able to hold off a vote for some time. At this point in 2011, House Republicans had already voted nine times on some form of repeal.
But conservatives pressed on, noting that their newly elected colleagues had not had a chance to vote on something that is a Republican rite of passage.