• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • House Repeals Obamacare; What's Next

    Now that the House has voted to repeal Obamacare, what happens next with H.R. 6079?

    The “Repeal of ObamaCare Act” will go to the Senate for consideration. If Senators take a few simple actions, they can force a debate and recorded vote in the Senate this year. They might even be able to pass it, although unlikely because of the minority party’s aversion to hardball politics.

    How to get it to the floor: Once the Senate receives the “Repeal of ObamaCare Act” from the House of Representatives, it is expected that a conservative Senator will use the Senate’s rules to force a vote. A Senator can use Rule 14 of the Senate’s rules to object to a second reading of the bill. This objection would place the House-passed Obamacare repeal bill in a position for debate on a motion to proceed to the bill and a roll-call vote on whether the Senate should consider the measure.

    If conservatives fumble the ball and no Senator objects to the second reading, then conservatives will have lost an opportunity for a vote. Failure to object using the Senate’s rules sends the bill to the black hole of a Senate Committee controlled by liberals. The repeal of Obamacare legislation would not be heard from again this Congress.

    How long it would take: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R–KY) or any other member of the Republican caucus can lodge an objection to the second reading of the bill that will start a two-day process to get the legislation on the Senate calendar. Once on the Senate calendar, the legislation can be considered at any point during the duration of this Congress.

    Once on the Senate calendar, any Senator can start the debate and trigger a recorded vote. All that Senator would need is to gather up 16 Senate signatures on a cloture petition pursuant to Rule 22 to commence a debate. The Senator then would take his cloture petition and file it with the clerk of the Senate. The filing of “cloture” would commence a debate and vote.

    How the left could block it: The only way for liberals to block consideration of the bill would be to table the bill or filibuster it.

    What’s needed to pass it: Now, if four Democrats defect and sign on to the idea of a full repeal of Obamacare, all of a sudden there are enough votes to pass the bill. If the supporters of H.R. 6079 can get to a simple majority of support, the only way liberals could prevent passage of the bill by a simple majority would be to engage in a filibuster of the bill. Yes, the same party that has harped on the idea of “filibuster reform” would be forced into a filibuster to prevent the “Repeal of ObamaCare Act” from passing.

    Under this scenario, there are two hardball tactics that can be used to repeal Obamacare. First would be to shame the filibuster-hating liberals into standing down and allowing an up-or-down vote on the bill. Nothing prevents conservatives from keeping the Senate on this bill if they have majority support until liberals relent. They have the power under the rules to file cloture over and over again until they shame liberals into allowing a majority of the Senate to pass the bill.

    Another hardball tactic that could be used would be to put the language of this full repeal of Obamacare on a must-pass bill. The federal government will need to pass an appropriations measure before October 1 to fund the government this fall. A steadfast and resolute House could attach the “Repeal of ObamaCare Act” to a continuing resolution to fund the federal government and dare the liberals in the Senate to cause a government shutdown over Obamacare.

    Any way you slice it, conservative Senators have the power, at a minimum, to force a vote. It is possible and not very difficult under the Senate’s rules.

    Posted in Featured, Obamacare [slideshow_deploy]

    30 Responses to House Repeals Obamacare; What's Next

    1. metaphorsbwithu says:

      I’m no expert on Senate rules, but ObamaCare was passed using the dubious reconciliation process – even though we now know the law explodes the deficit, not reduces it. Since repeal would unquestuionably reduce the deficit, why is reconciliation not a tactic and means of avoiding a filibuster.

      • Pragmatic says:

        The official score by the CBO shows the law reducing the deficit, so that won't work. I'm not saying that the CBO is right or wrong, but that is the reason that probably won't work.

        • desert1 says:

          The "official score" by the CBO was given based on the bogus calculus and outline of the bill the supermajority gave it. It certainly WILL work and in alignment with the old saying that "you can't make a dent if you stop swinging at it"!! Only the delusional and partisan hacks and fools now believe the ObamaTax law will reduce the deficit.

      • eddodt says:

        i thought that "fiscal/financial" bills as opposed to regulatory bills COULD NOT be fillibustered. am i wrong?

    2. @vettegal14 says:

      The problem is that the Republican leaders will never do what needs to be done to get rid of this horrific bill. They will fold just like they always do. Obamacare will very likely put us out of business and they are too freaking worried about being called racists. It just blows my mind. My oh my how I miss Jesse Helms

      • Paul Rider says:

        The Republicans are doing all they can to repeal Obamacare. But with a Democrat controlled Senate and that bozo in the White House, it's a futile attempt at this time. The only way that will change is to Repeal Obama in November, retain a Republican lead in the House, and gain a Republican lead in the Senate. It's up to the voters.

        • Jeanne Stotler says:

          just like all the budget's proposed and other bills that have passed the house, Reid tables them, therefore they get no vote. Reid has appointed himself as door keeper that no bills presented by a Republican House will be presented to the Senate. Pelosi, Reid and Obama have all defied the oaths they took to uphold the Constitution, they have committed treason and should be tried for it.

        • Weiss says:

          I am very sorry but the Bozo is not in the Whitehouse rather wants to get in!!

          • noman says:

            Your right he is not a bozo, he is a liar. People like you took the bait and gulped hook and line and the pol.

          • claude says:

            weiss, you are obviously the bozo, who would re-elect such a fool and thug as obama!

        • Liz says:

          we need control of the house and the senate in order to get anything done, hopefully they will impeach this president and put him on trial, I hear he is going to do everything he can to take America down if he loses the election, he is now using executive orders to sign us into oblivian, I sure hope someone can stop him

    3. Alex Fezzeroni says:

      You do realize President Obama would need to sign the repeal into law if it even passes through the Senate (which is most certainly won't).

      • Conservatives will never know if they don't push the issue.
        Remember, President Obama campaigned against extending all the Bush Tax cuts in the fall of 2010, then agreed to and signed an extension in the Lame Duck. You negotiate against yourself when you accept the idea that "the Senate will not pass" and the "President will not sign" a full repeal of ObamaCare. If the President is forced with a decision to shut down the government or sign an appropriations bill contiaining full repeal, that would be a difficult choice.
        It maybe true that the Senate will have not pass and the President will not sign a full repeal, but we shall not know until the President is forced to make that decision.

      • Jeanne Stotler says:

        It will hit the Senate after election and it wll be signed into law, I believe that what Robert's wrote was to give it back to the congress therefore the SCOTUS would have clean hands. Nov 6 th is just a little over 3 mos away, with rayer and determination, we will restore this country to what our ancestors intended

    4. Gary says:

      With Obamacare and its possible repeal in the news, I read a Letter to the Editor the other day essentially saying that Democrats stole the idea from Republicans several years ago. Would anyone care to revisit the page http://www.heritage.org/research/lecture/assuring
      (a small reference was made to a brief called A National Health System for America) and explain why that 1989 proposal was, or was not, a plan for national healthcare?

    5. CMJsMarmee says:

      "Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R–KY) or any other member of the Republican caucus can lodge an objection to the second reading "…
      G-R-E-A-A-T. We all saw 2 weeks ago on Fox News Sunday what a glittering jewel of colossal hemming-and-hawing Mitch McConnell is. Tragic that he's considered a "leader" among Republicans. What a joke.
      If anything—ANYTHING—depends upon the "leadership" or brain of Mitch McConnell, we are doomed. Goodbye–fini–done for. What a useless individual.
      Please tell me that someone with cajones is already primed to stand and object to the 2nd reading.
      Please.

      • Bobbie says:

        Why does it matter when it originated and by who? We've come to know government controlled health care contrasts America's freedoms and liberties AND dignity. As we know government is corruptible, corrupting and corrupt, why do we trust them when they failed to avoid the problem (whatever constituted government intervention, intrusion, authority) in the first place?

        In the free market there's accountability, competition and preference. In any American government operated market, preference is highly unethical and unAmerican and extremely unconstitutional. It's government that is suppose to govern equally to all in every area of government in America. Which constitutes uninvolved government where the people can govern their own. America won't be saved with government members that ignore, disrespect and deny their oath while they distort its truth to reflect government control. Read the peoples American constitution to interpret the empowerment of people not the federal government. It's our (PEOPLES) CONSTITUTION not the government members to play with to convenience them!

        In the private sector any corruption in businesses and consumers are known by word of mouth and decide for themselves with access to court and the freedom to boycott (and PRECISELY where the government failed their duty to oversee to correct corruption, not take over.) Government control is corruption and there's absolutely nothing that you'll find worth doing about it because government holds themselves to no accountability, their defense is paid by us with their appointed judges. Government doesn't generate money, everything they do is paid by people that earn their paychecks who are left with less to govern their own.

        Because abusive government is here, no private business is free to operate the way they choose. Forced to comply to government who's job isn't to conduct business or set dictatorship on free markets or free people. This act of unconstitutional government, eliminates competition, freedom, liberties and pursuits of ones own happiness. The do nothing senate refuses the will and protection of America because they're helping the take over!

    6. Pingback: House Repeals Obamacare; What’s Next

    7. Mike, Wichita Falls says:

      I like your last idea…attach it to a must-pass bill, be it appropriations or raising the debt-ceiling. Make Reid and Obama decide between taking away the people's newfound right of healthcare benefits, in the case of repealing Obamacare, or taking away senior's age-old retirement benefits, in the case of shutting down the government. Which constituency has more stroke? Make the contrast between liberty and tyranny as stark as possible right before the election when the voters are really paying attention. I love it.

    8. Steve h says:

      Based on what i've seen in the House the last 2 years, what's next is easy – they will vote to repeal and defund Obamacare 10 more times by the end of the year. 33 votes already and they keep doing it over and over and over, wasting tax payer money and hurting the economy when they could be working on jobs packages. Instead, they want to relive the debates of 2010 in hopes of it helping their election chances. What a joke this GOP House is and no wonder so many tea partiers will be gone next year. What a total waste.

    9. Diane Winston says:

      This seems a good time for all CONSERVATIVE Republicans and Tea Party activists to flood Senator McConnell's phone lines to insist he stiffen his spine and show some courageous leadership. I'd count on Senator Jim DeMint to have the courage to do what is right. Call and encourage him too!!

    10. and2therepublic says:

      Brian, can Senator Reid refuse to bring the bill up for a first reading?

      • Jeanne Stotler says:

        Yes and he oes it with every idea he doesn'tagree with, VOTE nov. 6th and retire this old couger

    11. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      It dies in the Senate.

    12. Soonerliberal says:

      hmmm….you Teapublicans vote to take away thousands of peoples tax payer provided acess to healthcare but, fail to live by the words you preach.
      http://repcloakroom.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle

      As far as I'm concerned, this punk politicians are millionaires anyway, let them pay for their own healthcare.

      YOu pubs love living off the dole when it benefits you. My state is perfect example (Oklahoma) —2/3rds of the state is on utility co-op or farm subsidies.

      • Bobbie says:

        the vote isn't to take away thousands of peoples tax payer provided access to health care that through government control is fully engulfed in corruption. It's repealing government control that infiltrates the country through this bill. It's holding government accountable to integrity. It's holding government to a standards of ethics the government on the democratic side has yet to show or incapable of showing.

    13. Well Now says:

      How is that HOPE and CHANGE working out for you?

      We have a House and Senate more interested in THEMSELVES than the People.

      Just ask yourself… why wasn't the Federal Government (Congress, Executive Branch, etc…) not included in this obamanation of a healthcare bill/act ?

      I am not convinced that ANY of them are regarding YOU and I at all and our properity or healthcare. Why is it that they can have cadillac healthcare plans while we get the … well, you know what I mean.

    14. Jeff Simon says:

      I am really skeptical that the Republican RINOs are smart enough to pull this off.

    15. Jim Scott says:

      The importance of forcing a vote in the Senate is that Dems, many of them running for re-election, will be forced to show voters their continued support for the onerous obamacare or now stand against it. It won't pass the Senate, Reid will see to that, and it if did obama would veto it.

    16. An outraged citizen says:

      We the people, need to push for Congressional term limits and not allow these crooks to stay in office for so long. When voted out of office, why do we have to continue paying them a salary????? AND the cadillac health insurance? If this healthcare act is good enough for we the people, then why isn't it good enough for the elected officials? No wonder our national debt keeps rising. Take away those everlasting salaries and we'd save a lot.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.

    ×