Just Don’t Call It a “Fix,” Please

So one aspect of the GOP’s response to a potential Supreme Court-generated crisis over Obamacare’s purchasing subsidies is becoming very clear: whatever they do or propose to do, they won’t let you call it a “fix.” That’s the message congressional Republicans tried to send via a Wall Street Journal article by Louise Radnofsky. But even the messengers have trouble avoiding the “f” word:

Leaders in the GOP-controlled House and Senate see the court challenge as their best hope for tearing apart a law they have long opposed. If the court strikes down the subsidies, Democrats are expected to clamor for lawmakers to pass a measure correcting the language in the law to revive them. Congressional Republicans say there is no possibility they would allow that.

“No, no, no, no,” said Sen. Dan Coats (R., Indiana). “Even Democrats have acknowledged that this needs fixing.”

Ooops.

The rest of the piece discusses exactly how radical Republicans want to be in exploiting the opportunity to come up with an Obamacare “alternative,” which is interesting insofar as coming up with any consensus alternative to the health care status quo has eluded Republicans for decades. There’s also the little matter of getting the president to go along. But it’s good to know that whatever they decide to do, they won’t be calling it a “fix.” I bet even Dan Coats starts getting that straight.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.