The Corner

‘Respect the Outcome of Elections’

I think there are plenty of good arguments against the defunding/shutdown strategy, but Senator McCain’s claim that we should “respect the outcome of elections” isn’t one of them. Opponents of Obamacare were elected, too, and are trying to use what power they have to stop a policy that they think is gravely damaging to the country and, by the way, unpopular. They are highly unlikely to repeal Obamacare or even much slow it down until they win more elections, sure, but that’s a matter of realism rather than commitment to democracy. McCain’s claim here is as empty as the frequent mantra of Obamacare supporters that it’s “the law of the land.” Nobody disputes that. A lot of Americans just want to make it a temporary condition. (And don’t get me started on the claim that the Supreme Court “validated” the law.)

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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