No Republican strategy? Are you kidding? When has there ever been one? I’ve been chronicling this failure for better than a decade and watching it for three. From the editors at National Review:
Republican congressional leaders thought they had come up with a great idea: Pass a bill through the House getting rid of an Obamacare “slush fund” that is slated to be used to advertise the benefits of the program. To make the bill more painful for the Democrats to oppose, redirect the funds to Obamacare’s ailing fund for “high-risk pools” for sick people — a better version of which is part of every conservative plan to replace Obamacare.
Now those congressional leaders are furious with conservative House members and organizations who have scuttled the bill for the time being; the bill’s opponents see it as a surrender in the battle to repeal Obamacare completely. While we side with the leadership on this specific bill, the uproar reflects the justified suspicion of grassroots conservatives that Republicans are just mouthing their support for repeal and replacement of Obamacare and have no real plan for bringing it about.
The failure to devise and articulate an anti-Obamacare strategy is, however, not that of the party leaders alone. Their conservative critics, when they have advanced their own strategies, have made proposals that are likely to set back the cause — such as using the threat of a government shutdown to force the Democrats to acquiesce in repeal.