KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

GOP Readies Plan To Fund Gov’t, Force Dems To Vote On Defunding Obamacare

House Republicans are planning to help pass a stopgap measure funding the federal government, but they also plan to force Democrats in the Senate to vote on defunding the health law in the process.

The Associated Press/Washington Post: House GOP May Link Debate Of Stopgap Spending Bill With Measure To Defund 'Obamacare'
House Republicans plan to condition a short-term spending bill for averting a government shutdown next month on making Senate Democrats vote on -- but not necessarily pass -- a tea party-backed plan to dismantle President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul. The move would be a partial victory for conservatives demanding a House vote to "defund 'Obamacare'" as part of any must-pass stopgap funding bill. But GOP leaders are employing an unusual procedural trick to make sure that the tea party measure doesn't get in the way of smooth passage of a straightforward stopgap funding bill before the Oct. 1 start of the new budget year (Taylor, 9/9).

Bloomberg: House Leaders May Pair Stopgap Funding With Health Vote
House Republican leaders put together a plan to enact a stopgap government funding measure by forcing the Democratic-led Senate to take a largely symbolic vote on defunding President Barack Obama’s health care law. The proposal, which two leadership aides said would be presented to rank-and-file House Republicans today, would allow a short-term U.S. spending measure to be enacted even if the Senate voted not to strip funding from the Affordable Care Act (Tiron and Rowley, 9/10).

The Wall Street Journal: House Republicans Craft Proposal To Avoid Shutdown
House Republicans on Monday prepared a plan to avoid a government shutdown this fall, while giving conservatives a fresh chance to attack President Barack Obama's signature health-care law. The proposal, to be presented to rank-and-file lawmakers as early as Tuesday, is an attempt by GOP leaders to fund government operations until mid-December and meet a key demand of conservative House Republicans, who have wanted to use a must-pass spending bill to take aim at the health care law they continue to oppose (Boles, 9/9).

Politico: House GOP May Reuse Legislative Gambit On Obamacare
House Republicans are dusting off an old legislative gambit from April 2011 as one way to move ahead this week with a stopgap spending bill for the first months of the new fiscal year beginning Oct. 1. The goal is to give conservatives a vote on defunding health care reform without resulting in a government shutdown. It has worked before, but "before" is the operative word. And until Tuesday's Republican Conference, Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) won’t really know whether this flash from the past can flash again (Rogers, 9/10).

But consideration of defunding may have to wait while lawmakers consider action against Syria --

Politico: Obamacare Defunding Pushed Aside By Syria
Congress’s curtain came down for summer break with Obamacare defunding center stage. But as the curtain goes back up as lawmakers return, it's Syria -- not defunding -- in the spotlight. At noon Tuesday, some of Obamacare's most ardent foes -- Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas and Mike Lee of Utah among them -- will hold a Tea Party Patriots-sponsored rally outside the Capitol to try to reignite the defunding enthusiasm. Time is short: Obamacare enrollment starts Oct. 1 (Cunningham, 9/10).

And Heritage Action pushes for Republicans to refuse to vote for any spending authorization that doesn't also defund the health law --

Los Angeles Times: Conservative Group Pushes Its Plan To Cripple Health Care Overhaul
With funding for government operations set to run out at the end of this month, Heritage Action, part of a coalition of conservative lawmakers and outside groups, wants Republicans to refuse to vote for a law that would authorize spending unless it also eliminates money for the health care law, a move that would hobble the Obama administration's efforts to launch Web-based insurance marketplaces Oct. 1 (Memoli, 9/9).

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