The House will vote this evening on measures to delay the employer and individual mandates in Obamacare.
President Obama has threatened to veto both bills, even though his administration has already decided to unilaterally impose a one-delay of the employer mandate, and the House legislation would simply codify that delay into law. Apparently, the White House deems this ”unneccesary.”
House leaders seem confident they have the votes to pass both bills, but nothing is ever guaranteed with this GOP conference. House Democrats are likely to oppose both bills, and conservatives groups are divided on the issue. FreedomWorks supports the effort to delay the individual mandate, but the Club for Growth and the Heritage Foundation have argued — without taking a position on the specific bills in question – that Republicans shouldn’t settle for anything less than full repeal, because incremental changes to the law will legitimize it and cement it as policy. In April, House leaders were forced to cancel a vote on legislation authored by House majority leader Eric Cantor to alter a portion of Obamacare after conservatives objected on similar grounds.
House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan told National Review Online that delaying the mandates would ultimately help Republicans repeal the law in its entirety, and predicted that most conservatives would ultimately share that view. “We’ve obviously voted for full repeal,” Ryan said. “We know that this president is not going to sign that. Delaying these core provisions shows that the law has fundamentally failed, it puts Democrats in the hot seat, and it helps us ultimately get to repeal. I think delaying the onset of a new entitlement is important if we want to stop the new entitlement.”
UPDATE: An earlier version of this post said that Heritage Action opposed the bills. In fact, the group has not taken a position.