It's supposed to be the first bill -- H.R.1 -- on the new Congress's agenda. The "full" repeal of the Affordable Healthcare Act, aka "Obamacare." Peter Boyer, writing in the New Yorker about the trials and travails of John Boehner, focuses on how Boehner will be forced to deal with this, to choose between the radicals and everyone else.
One approach is to hold committee hearings that would expose the health-care law to a trial by oversight, so thoroughly revealing its flaws that Republicans could try for full repeal near the end of the session. Meanwhile, there would be revisions around the margins—a repeal, for example, of the much reviled requirement, tucked into the health-care bill, that businesses file 1099 forms for every contractual transaction over six hundred dollars. This is the approach that Boehner is believed to favor. ...New Yorker
Lotsaluck there, Johnboy. The tea partyers aren't about to take that lying down.
One possible course for Boehner is to continue his recent parroting of Tea Party rhetoric, while working to adjust the new members, over time, to the realities of their limited legislative power, and of the risk in seeming too radical. He could talk of repealing “this monstrosity,” and of having “a lot of tricks up our sleeves,” knowing that even starving the health law of funds will be difficult to achieve legislatively, since Obama will have to sign funding bills.
Paul Ryan believes that Boehner will prove equal to the challenge. “He’s been around,” Ryan says. “He’s poised with experience. And I think he, of all people, kind of understands where we are, the moment we are in. The problem with leaders, typically, is that they’re worried about their personal ambitions, and that clouds their judgment. He will have arrived, he will have fulfilled his personal ambitions. He doesn’t have any farther to rise. And people who get into that moment—not everybody, but a lot of them—end up doing more the right thing than not. And I think he realizes that he can’t stand athwart history or the direction of this new conference, anyway. If he tried, they’d throw him out.”
Boehner is aware of the heat from below, which is perhaps why, when I asked him whether he means to try the oversight route with health care or yield to the cry for full repeal, he replied, “All of the above.” ...New Yorker
Boyer wrote that in mid-December, well before John Boehner found himself on the rocks at the bottom of the fiscal cliff and before his renewal as Speaker came up embarrassingly short on votes. Over there in the intransigent far right all signs point to an increasingly tenacious, one-track tea party that appears to be out for blood as members the new House -- with its diminishing Republican majority -- begin business.