Today, the House of Representatives plans to vote on final passage of the Democrats’ health care reform legislation, which has unleashed a wave of unhinged political posturing from the right. Many Republicans believe that repealing health care benefits in subsequent years is their ticket reclaiming power. “Sparked by the conservative activist group Club for Growth,” the repeal movement has won the support of Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) and House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH), who said Republicans would “have an effort to repeal the bill.” Today, on Fox News Sunday, right-wing pundit Bill Kristol predicted that “the bulk” of health care reform would be repealed by 2013:
People are concerned about the future of this country and they think this bill is bad for it by a majority, and I believe that will be the Republican message and the Republican message will be a responsible one to repeal this bill and replace it with better health care reforms and to get a handle on the debt, which this bill increases…The American public are going to insist on its repeal over the next three years. We are! I predict in 2013 the bulk of this will be repealed and replaced with better health care legislation.
Of course, the “Kristol ball” doesn’t have the best track record when it comes to making predictions. Plus, as Igor Volsky has pointed out, once the bill is enacted repeal will not look like a favorable option. “The short term benefit of motivating your base by condemning a drawn out and somewhat dirty process may be substantial, but repealing policies that give billions of dollars in federal funds to the states and protect individuals from some fairly egregious insurer practices makes little sense,” he wrote.