The Republican establishment constantly works against conservatives.
No matter what lip service these politicians pay to conservatism on the campaign trail, they are just as committed to Big Government as Democrats.
And one leading conservative believes their latest scheme may install Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House.
Since 2010, repealing Obamacare has been a cornerstone of Republican campaigns.
Putting the horrors of Obamacare front and center and promising to rescue the American people from it helped lead to electoral victories in 2010, 2014 and 2016.
In fact, the only election the GOP lost was in 2012 – when the party establishment pushed Obamacare inventor Mitt Romney as their presidential nominee.
Donald Trump has promised to sign a repeal bill and already put a down payment on his pledge by signing an executive order instructing the government to not enforce Obamacare’s taxes and penalties whenever possible.
But a total Obamacare repeal depends on an act of Congress.
And many establishment Republicans are getting cold feet.
Two Senate Republicans – Orrin Hatch of Utah and Lamar Alexander of Tennessee – have stated they are open to “repairing” Obamacare.
And Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) have introduced legislation allowing states to keep Obamacare in place.
Many conservatives consider these measures an explicit betrayal.
And the lack of action to fully repeal Obamacare suggests these measures will become even more likely as time passes.
But this would have disastrous consequences for the GOP.
The most immediate concern is the 2018 midterm elections.
Conservative blogger Erick Erickson writes that if the GOP fails to repeal Obamacare, it would lead to Democrats taking power and Nancy Pelosi becoming Speaker of the House:
“Republican leaders, against the wishes of Paul Ryan and Donald Trump, have decided to keep Obamacare in place and “fix” it. Since 2010, they have told the base that if the Republicans would give them the House, the Senate, and the White House that they would repeal Obamacare. Now, Paul Ryan wants them to repeal Obamacare. Donald Trump wants them to repeal Obamacare. But various committee chairmen in the House and Senate have decided to take a pass on doing that. They don’t want the hard work voters hired them to do and have decided to coast off the cliff.
Mid-term elections depend on an excited and mobilized base. The Democrats have it. If the GOP does not keep the one promise that made so many people stick with them, they will see their numbers wiped out. The typical turnover in the House in a midterm election is 30 seats. That would be enough to replace Paul Ryan with Nancy Pelosi.
If the GOP will not repeal Obamacare — if they just tweak it or do some too clever by half Cassidy-Collins plan where they keep it and claim they did not keep it — the GOP might as well kiss the House goodbye and probably the Senate too.”