This is a sad but remarkable statement about the state of the current Republican Party. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) publicly acknowledged that Republicans’ threat to shut down the government to stop the Affordable Care Act won’t actually prevent the law from being implemented, but he is afraid to actually oppose the plan. From WYMT:
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has refused to publicly take a side as some members of his party lobby for shutting down the federal government.
“The problem is the bill that would shut down the government wouldn’t shut down Obamacare,” McConnell said. “Most of it is permanent law and not affected by that. It also wouldn’t stop the taxes. Taxes that are going in on medical devices, taxes that are going in on health insurance premiums.”
McConnell knows this plan is stupid. He knows it can’t work. Even if Republicans shut down the government, Obama will never agree to destroy his signature achievement, and a key part of his legacy, to fix what would be a temporary issue. Obama will never face re-election again. He can simply out-wait the GOP on this issue.
Yet McConnell is afraid to oppose the idea because he is facing a tough primary. The fact that a plan is completely unworkable may not be an acceptable excuse among the Republican base for not backing something that is “conservative.”
Whether or not something could actually work no longer seems to be a decisive concern for Republicans. What matters is whether it sounds tough.