As far as we’re concerned, Sen. Mitch McConnell earned himself a lifetime pass from the kind of criticism we like to level against others in the GOP leadership when he successfully blocked the vote on Obama’s Supreme Court nominee. With that brave move, McConnell singlehandedly kept the court from falling into the dark hands of liberalism – an ideology that cares as much about the Constitution as it does about individual responsibility.
But while you’ll never hear us calling for Kentuckians to ride McConnell out on a rail, his Supreme Court victory doesn’t absolve him of all criticism whatsoever. He still has an important role to play as the top Senate Republican, and he is about to face the test of the century. The Democrats, in collusion with the mainstream media, are trying to make the House healthcare bill look like the worst piece of legislation to ever come down the pike; there will be extraordinary political pressure on the Republican-controlled Senate to whittle it away until it’s little more than an Obamacare add-on. It’s up to McConnell and the rest of the Senate Republicans to resist that pressure.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is clearly positioning himself to be Donald Trump’s chief foil, perhaps setting the groundwork for a run at his job in 2020. But whether that latter part is true or not, Schumer would love nothing more than to stop the Republican healthcare bill in its tracks. All he needs is a little assist from a few Republicans who “just aren’t there yet,” and Schumer can save Obamacare…well, until it implodes due to its own inherent failings.
But even that would be just fine for the majority of Democrats. Obamacare was always supposed to be a temporary stopping point on the way to universal healthcare; it’s self-destruction was largely built into the law itself. It’s a feature, not a bug, as the kids in Silicon Valley like to say. It was never supposed to become the permanent state of things. The Democrats don’t want the federal government to be in the health insurance business – they want the federal government to control ALL of healthcare from top to bottom. For that socialist plan to succeed, everything else – including Obamacare – must eventually fail.
The Republican healthcare plan jams up the works from that perspective, and the Democrats are going to do everything in their power to keep it from being signed into law. It’s up to Senate Republicans to do as their House counterparts did: Realize that they will be forced to vote for an imperfect solution. Not because it’s what’s best for the American people, but because it’s a little bit better than what we have now and a LOT better than what the Democrats have planned.