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Republicans Lay Groundwork For Healthcare Repeal

From The Los Angeles Times:

Rep. Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) and other conservatives have long favored replacing the current healthcare system. (Riccardo S. Savi, WireImage / October 18, 2011)

Seeing a chance to regain power next year, GOP activists are making sure they’re ready to act on a full rollback of President Obama’s overhaul.

By Noam N. Levey

8:45 PM PDT, October 17, 2011

Washington, D.C. — Republican activists, increasingly optimistic they can win the White House and Senate next year, are beginning to lay the groundwork for a multi-pronged campaign in 2013 to roll back President Obama’s sweeping healthcare overhaul.

The push includes an effort to pressure Republican candidates to commit to using every available tool to fully repeal the law, a tactic pioneered by conservative activist Grover Norquist, who made an anti-tax pledge de rigeur for GOP politicians.

Other conservative healthcare experts are developing an alternative to the law, an effort that could protect Republicans from past critiques that their healthcare plans left tens of millions of Americans without medical coverage.

“The window for action comes and goes,” said Tom Miller, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, one of several conservative groups involved in the effort. “We need to be ready.”

None of the leading Republican presidential candidates has offered a healthcare plan. And conservative experts think the GOP needs a strategy to quickly dismantle the current law and replace it before all Americans are guaranteed insurance coverage under the law.

Some activists are so concerned that Republicans will miss their chance that they are trying to lock GOP candidates into using a controversial parliamentary tactic known as budget reconciliation to circumvent Senate Democratic opposition to repeal. Continue reading

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