“Yes” On Obamacare Repeal Budget Resolution (S. Con. Res. 3)

On Friday, the House will consider a concurrent resolution (S. CON. RES. 3). While the resolution will technically set the congressional budget for the United States Government for the remaining eight months of fiscal year 2017, its only functional purpose will be to produce reconciliation instructions that unlock fast track authority that Congress can then use to repeal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). Separately, there is an expectation that the fiscal year 2018 budget resolution will reflect the longstanding conservative values embedded in previous GOP budgets. But to be absolutely clear, adopting S. CON. RES 3 is the only way to expedite the repeal of Obamacare.

In November, the Mercatus Center’s Brian Blase and The Heritage Foundation’s Paul Winfree, who was recently appointed Director of Budget Policy and Deputy Director of the Domestic Policy Council for The White House, laid out a “roadmap” on how to repeal Obamacare. The first step is to adopt the unpassed FY 17 budget that “include[s] instructions to the relevant committees in Congress” to repeal Obamacare. “This will set up the ability for Congress to pass a reconciliation bill repealing all the budgetary components of the ACA immediately after Trump is sworn into office,” Blase and Winfree continued.

S. CON. RES. 3 is the legislative vehicle that initiates that strategy.  There will be many debates on the nature of the actual reconciliation bill. Those debates are important and conservatives must get those policy questions right, but absent adoption of the FY 17 budget resolution those debates are theoretical. It simply cannot be overstated, S. CON. RES. 3 represents the only mechanism to expedite the Obamacare repeal process and thus deliver on six years of campaign promises.

As that process moves forward in the coming weeks — reconciliation recommendations must be submitted to the House and Senate budget committees by January 27 — conservatives will view the reconciliation measure vetoed by President Obama as the bare minimum. That bill would have repealed the vast majority of Obamacare including the individual and employer mandates, the coverage subsidies, Medicaid expansion and the law’s onerous taxes, and included a two-year transition period.  As Speaker Ryan noted last year, “We have shown now that there is a clear path to repealing Obamacare without 60 votes in the Senate. So, next year, if we’re sending this bill to a Republican president, it will get signed into law.”

Of course, the importance of repealing Obamacare is more than simply fulfilling a campaign promise; it is about beginning the process of expanding choice in and lowering costs of a health care system that is currently bankrupting the nation, hurting hardworking Americans and slowing economic growth.  Last year, The Heritage Foundation’s Robert E. Moffit, Ph.D., explained Americans have real, practical concerns about Obamacare that cannot be ignored or dismissed:

“Americans’ health care worries are real, and their concerns are practical. For the overwhelming majority of Americans, the right policy goal is making health care more affordable. Today, however, the ‘typical family’ pays about 35 percent of their income for health care. The temporary slowdown in health spending, which started in the early 2000s, is over, and businesses, individuals, and families are once again threatened with higher health care costs. Since 2013, premiums and deductibles in the non-group market have jumped dramatically, while millions have lost their previous coverage, notwithstanding high-profile presidential promises that they could keep it.”

Moffit went on to suggest that “there is no mystery why Americans, on everyday matters that directly concern them, continue to oppose the law.” Those reasons include, for example:

  1. Despite the president’s repeated promises, rising health insurance premiums continue to burden businesses and families.
  2. Obamacare generates big and surprising out-of-pocket costs.
  3. Obamacare reduces insurance competition and consumer choice.
  4. Obamacare destroys jobs and discourages employment.
  5. The overall health care cost curve is “bending” upward.
  6. Obamacare imposes major tax increases on America’s middle class.
  7. Medicare payment cuts threaten seniors’ future access to care.
  8. Obamacare increases deficits and debt.
  9. Obamacare forces Americans, in direct violation of their rights of conscience, to fund abortion through their own tax dollars.
  10. Obamacare imposes arbitrary rules and costly mandates.

Congressional Republicans rightly opposed President Obama’s health care reform, a reform which was never embraced or accepted by the American people.  In Real Clear Politics polling, Obamacare rarely averaged above 43 percent approval.  Now is the time for congressional Republicans to begin delivering on their multi-cycle campaign promise to repeal Obamacare.  “The current plan” to use “budget reconciliation is a necessary first step in that process,” states James I. Wallner, Ph.D., group vice president for research at The Heritage Foundation.  And S. CON. RES. 3 is the only legislation that begins that process.

Heritage Action supports S. CON. RES 3 and will include it as a key vote on our legislative scorecard.

*Originally published at Heritage Action, click here.


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Clinton’s Small Business Plan is More Government

Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton will roll out her plan to make American small businesses great again, or in her words: “to support small businesses at every stage.” “Hillary Clinton’s plan is one part big government and one part empty rhetoric,”Heritage Action’s chief executive officer Michael A. Needham said. “Clinton…

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Congress Should Stop All Obamacare Bailouts

Last Monday, Aetna Inc. announced it would stop selling health insurance on the vast majority of Obamacare state exchanges throughout the country. Aetna now joins a growing list of some of the largest insurance companies in the country who are losing money insuring high-cost consumers and are pulling out of…

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White House in Denial of Dodd-Frank’s Negative Impact on Small Banks

In the six years since Dodd-Frank was implemented, community banks have been choked by overbearing federal regulations, causing many banks to close their doors. The Texas Bankers Association revealed that in Texas alone, 143 banks have closed since 2010 and only three new banks have been chartered - not exactly…

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Business Owner Sentinel Strategy Call 08/17/16

Yesterday, conservative business owners from across the country joined together for monthly Heritage Action Sentinel Strategy call. During the call we discussed how federal regulations stemming from the Dodd-Frank Act and the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), restrict access to capital for entrepreneurs and American businesses. Special guests - Norbert Michel…

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Sentinel Strategy Call: Business Owners

Please join Heritage Action and conservative sentinel business owners from across the country this Wednesday at 5:00 pm E.T. for our monthly strategy call. Learn more about the Sentinel Business Owner program and hear from Heritage Foundation scholars on federal financial regulatory policy preventing you from growing your business. Talk…

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Obamacare Taxes Target Small Businesses

In the continued debate over Obamacare, most of the attention is focused on the continued rise in healthcare premiums, the employer and individual mandates, insurance company bailouts, and even the failing Obamacare exchanges. But what most commentaries fail to mention is the amount of new taxes Obamacare imposes on the…

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Federal Regulation cost economy $4 trillion since 1980

Guest Blog: Gloria Taylor A new study from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University demonstrates just how destructive regulations are on the U.S. economy. The study showed that if the state of regulation had remained constant since 1980, the economy would be 25% larger, amounting to a total economic…

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Trump Calls for Lower and Equal Tax Treatment of U.S. Businesses

Earlier this week, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump unveiled his revised tax reform proposal in a speech at the Detroit Economic Club. In his speech, Trump called for a reduction and equalization of taxes applied to both large and small American businesses. Trump’s proposal would lower the federal corporate tax…

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Baltimore’s Misguided Attempt to Raise the Minimum Wage

Guest Blog: Natalie Wyman As the national debate over the minimum wage intensifies across the country, local entities are taking on the issue and analyzing the effects that sharply raising the minimum wage will have on their local communities. Baltimore’s City Council is in the midst of a heated debate…

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Congress Considers Higher Spending Levels Even as National Debt Nears $20 Trillion

On September 30th, the federal government will run out of discretionary funding unless Congress takes action. Currently, all signs point to Congress passing a continuing resolution (CR), as they have done the last couple of years, which would continue funding the government for an allotted period of time. Congress must…

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This Bill Would Stop the Obama Administration From Prioritizing Insurance Companies over Taxpayers

In order to convince health insurance companies to participate in the financially risky Obamacare exchanges, three health insurance bailout provisions were written into Obamacare including risk corridors, reinsurance, and cost-sharing subsidies. These bailout provisions were meant to compensate health insurance companies for losses sustained while participating in Obamacare. The reinsurance…

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Democrats Call for $15 Federal Minimum Wage Increase in Philly

Last week, the Democrat Party held their convention in Philadelphia to nominate Hillary Clinton for President. During the campaign trail, Secretary Clinton called for a $12 an hour federal minimum wage hike while Senator Bernie Sanders supported the higher $15 an hour wage hike. As it turns out, Sen. Sanders…

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Graduate Students Next on NLRB’s List for Union Expansion

Guest Blog: Natalie Wyman This summer, the National Labor Relations Board will decide a case that will determine if graduate students can bargain as a union. And with a board that has been primarily appointed by Obama, it is very likely that there could be a ruling in favor of…

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Fight over Corporate Welfare Bank Continues

Debate over the little known Export-Import Bank is heating up once again. Opposition to this bank has increased over the past few years as conservative members of Congress were able to prevent the reauthorization of the Ex-Im Bank last year, but only temporarily. After five short months Congress voted to…

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Should the Federal Government Regulate Greenhouse Gases?

Heritage Action recently joined energy groups and other conservative organizations in sending a letter to Representative Evan Jenkins (R-WV) thanking him for introducing his latest bill, the Transparency and Honesty in Energy Regulations Act of 2016 (THERA). The bill would stop federal regulatory agencies from using the “social cost of…

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NLRB Limits Employer Hiring Options by Eliminating Employer Consent in Unionization Process

Guest Blog: Natalie Wyman Earlier this month, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued yet another invasive decision that further limits employers in favor of empowering unions. In Miller & Anderson, the NLRB overturned their 2004 ruling requiring solely and jointly employed employees to get employer consent before unionizing together.…

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Government Regulations Burning Employer’s at Both Ends

Guest Blog: Jordan Alvarez The term ‘business owner’ is thrown around quite a bit – so much so that we forget it’s true meaning.  Business owners are more than just important people.  These individuals put their entire lives on the line day in and day out to make their vision…

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Full-Repeal of DOL’s Overtime Rule is the Right Approach

Last week, Representative Kurt Schrader (D-OR) introduced a bill to delay implementation of the Department of Labor’s (DOL) new overtime rule that raises the threshold for mandatory overtime pay from $23,660 to $47,476. The Overtime Reform and Enhancement Act (H.R. 5813) would slowly phase in the 100% increase in overtime…

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Business Owners Sentinel Strategy Call

Yesterday, conservative business owners from across the country joined together for a Heritage Action sentinel strategy call. We provided an introduction to the program, an overview of the most important issues facing business owners, and the latest regarding legislative efforts to stop the Department of Labor's (DOL) new overtime rule, push…

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Dodd-Frank Cost $36 Billion, 73 Million in Paperwork Hours

A recent report from the American Action Forum (AAF) shows that total regulatory cost from the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 now exceeds $36 billion. This report, published one day before the 6-year anniversary of Dodd-Frank, shows just how destructive the law has been. In addition to the regulatory cost, the…

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