“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 That bill would have repealed the vast majority of Obamacare including the individual and employer mandates, the coverage subsidies, Medicaid expansion and the law’s onerous taxes, and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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Fannie and Freddie May Need Another Taxpayer Bailout

According to the latest Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac stress test, these Government Sponsored Enterprise (GSE) giants could need a taxpayer bailout of as much as $126 billion during a future potential economic crisis. The stress test, mandated by the Dodd-Frank Act and conducted by the Federal Housing Finance Agency…

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Why mortgage principal forgiveness policy is a bad idea

By John L. Ligon, Heritage Foundation Senior Policy Analyst There’s nothing like a “good crisis” to give the federal government an opening to spread its tentacles further into private markets. Just look at the vast growth of federal housing programs since the 2007-2009 financial crisis. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac…

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Real Estate Professional Sentinel Strategy Call 08/10/16

Yesterday, conservative real estate professionals from across the country joined together for our second Heritage Action monthly sentinel strategy call. During the call we discussed changes to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) “Know Before you Owe” rule and the Heritage Action sentinel real estate professional letter we sent into…

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Why Resurrecting Glass-Steagall is a Mistake

Guest Blog: Gloria Taylor In a rare occurrence, Republicans and Democrats share some common ground in their respective political platforms this election cycle. Both call for restoring the 1933 Glass-Steagall Act that effectively separated commercial and investment banking in the response to the Great Depression. At the time, the law’s…

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Fannie Mae Expands Low-Down-Payment Program

Fannie Mae recently made changes to their low-down-payment program in order to make it even easier to get a 3% down mortgage. The program, called HomeReady, is targeted to moderate to low-income renters who want to buy a home, but haven’t saved enough to make a down-payment. Changes to the…

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CFPB Announces Slight Changes to “Know Before you Owe” Rule

On July 29th, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) publicly announced changes to its problematic TRID or “Know Before you Owe” rule after issuing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking earlier this May. One of the more significant changes included is a clarification that lenders may share the Closing Disclosure (CD)…

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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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CFPB Exceeds its Authority Again

Guest Blog: Natalie Wyman The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) was created by Dodd-Frank in 2010 as a federal agency that would protect consumers by imposing regulations on businesses and banks. However, the CFPB has proven itself to be the one in need of accountability; its structure does not allow…

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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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Sentinel Real Estate Professionals CFPB Letter on TRID and Dodd-Frank Reform

Heritage Action Sentinel Real Estate Professionals sent a letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) calling on the bureau to reform its costly and burdensome “Know Before you Owe” rule, or “TRID” in its upcoming Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. The bureau’s relatively new guidance has faced strong opposition from…

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FHA will now Insure PACE Loans

Last Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) will now insure mortgages on certain properties with Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) loans. According to HUD’s website, “FHA will now approve purchase and refinance mortgage applications in states that treat PACE…

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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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Special Interests Should not Stand in the way of Dodd-Frank Reform

This week marks the six year anniversary since the Dodd-Frank Act was signed into law by President Obama, but instead of addressing the major causes of the financial crisis, Dodd-Frank has made things worse. The bill has imposed 3,500-plus pages of new rules and regulations on the financial industry, codified “too…

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Senators Push Back Against FHFA Efforts to Release Fannie and Freddie from Conservatorship

A bipartisan group of Senators recently sent a letter urging Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) Director Mel Watt to wait on “comprehensive reform” from Congress before “taking any steps that may facilitate the release of government sponsored enterprises, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, out of conservatorship.” Their letter is written…

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House Passed Interior-EPA Spending Bill a Mixed Bag

Last Thursday, the House of Representatives passed a $32.1 billion Fiscal Year 2017 Interior-EPA spending bill (H.R. 5538) by a vote of 231 to 196. While the bill did include some good policy changes to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Heritage Action did not support final passage due to the…

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14th, 15th and 16th Obamacare Co-Op Collapses as Health Care Costs Continue to Rise

Earlier this month, Connecticut’s Obamacare co-op health insurer became the 14th out of 23 co-ops to fail. According to Representative Fred Upton (R-MI), “With Connecticut’s collapse, the administration’s failures are closing in on a $1.5 billion hole for taxpayers.” But this week things are even worse for the Obama administration’s…

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Real Estate Professional Sentinel Strategy Call

Yesterday, conservative real estate professionals from across the country joined together for a Heritage Action sentinel strategy call. We provide an introduction to the program, an overview of the most important issues facing real estate professionals, and the latest regarding Dodd-Frank and CFPB legislative reform efforts. If you weren't able…

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14th Obamacare Co-op Collapses as Health Care Costs Continue to Rise

Last week, Connecticut’s Obamacare co-op health insurer became the 14th out of 23 co-ops to fail. According to Representative Fred Upton (R-MI), “With Connecticut’s collapse, the administration’s failures are closing in on a $1.5 billion hole for taxpayers.” The co-ops, or consumer operated and oriented plans, were created to inject…

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National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Does More Harm than Good

In testimony before the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship earlier this month, the vice chairman of the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) Insurance Committee called for lower flood insurance rate increases as Congress works to reauthorize the NFIP, which expires in September 2017. Currently, the NFIP uses taxpayer…

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Dodd-Frank Replacement Bill would Transform CFPB

With the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act in 2010, one of the most unaccountable federal agencies in American history was created. Title X of Dodd-Frank consolidated authority for over 50 rules and orders stemming from 18 different consumer protection laws spread among seven agencies into the hands of the newly…

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