Politics of brinkmanship

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  • Mickey Kovars Tampa, FL
    Sept. 25, 2013 10:05 a.m.

    The Republicans have only themselves to blame for Obamacare, for at least two reasons. First, they utterly failed to present a viable alternative plan when it counted, and it's not as if the status quo ante was acceptable. Second, by giving us George Bush and his horribly mismanaged Iraq war, they made the election of Obama possible. As a friend says, Bush destroyed the Republican party. It is hard for me to see any worth in either party right now.

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    Sept. 23, 2013 11:03 p.m.

    @Mike Richards -- Democrats want to fund the government. Some Republicans want to fund part of the government, but not all of it. Which party is trying to shut the government down? The one that wants to fund all of government or the one that doesn't? It's not difficult to figure out.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    Sept. 23, 2013 5:25 p.m.

    Mike Richards - I see you've taken up creative writing in your spare time. And you are probably right that I should read the DN, especially if I want to hear your interpretation of things. But as I look through the newspaper entries on Google I see US News and World Report, The Guardian, The NY Daily News and other non-liberal publications and of course there are also some other "liberal" publications all saying the same thing - The Republicans are threatening to shut down the government. You can spin the news any way you want but it doesn't change the truth. The Republicans can't change the ACA through legislative processes - they even admit it - so they are attempting to stop it from going into effect with blackmail. And then they are claiming the high road, as evidenced by your response today at 3:33.

    Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., said the problem with the shutdown threat by Lee, Rubio, Vitter and other Republicans is that it fails to recognize the GOP lost the 2012 presidential election to President Obama who strongly defended the law during the campaign against Republican Mitt Romney.

    I guess not all the Republicans are irresponsible.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Sept. 23, 2013 3:33 p.m.


    Who is threatening to shut down the government, the Republicans or the Democrats? Hint: It isn't the Republicans.

    Who refuses to let the Senate vote on the budget passed by the house, the Republicans or the Democrats? Hint: Harry Reid is not a Republican.

    Who will stop all payments to the elderly, the infirm, the children, the oppressed, the Republicans or the Democrats? Hint: Only the Democrats have threatened to shut down the government. The Republicans have FULLY funded all programs except ObamaCare, which is the program that OBAMA refuses to implement!

    It might be a good idea for you to read the Deseret News so that you will know which party has drawn a "red line in the sand". Hint: it isn't the Republicans.

  • Jim G Mesa, AZ
    Sept. 23, 2013 12:54 p.m.

    Mr. Flake is my senator, and I think he is seeking a coward's way out of a dilemma, a dilemma created by his colleagues in Washington who either don't understand the consequences of their actions or, since they are exempted from them, don't care. I believe in this case he would rather go along to get along, rather than take a stand against bad policy. You do understand, don't you, that to follow his strategy the healthcare law will fail by inflicting enormous pain on America, both its citizens and its economy? This is not unlike letting a cancer run its course to see if it needs treatment.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    Sept. 23, 2013 10:55 a.m.

    Mike Richards - Please stop trying to claim that the president is usurping his authoriyty aqnd undermining the Constitution when it is your friends on the far right in Congress who are usurping the process for legislating established in the Constitution. Because they can't get the votes necessary to overturn legislation with which they disagree The ACA), they, instead, are threatening to shut down the entire government and, once again, putting the full faith and credit of our nation in jeopardy. If Obamacare is so objectionable to the American people why can't they just get the votes necessary to overturn it? Why must they use underhanded scare tactics and play childish games to get what they want. Is it because they ARE children? When will the grownups come back to Congress? I guess we have to elect them first.

  • louie Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Sept. 23, 2013 9:57 a.m.

    "The Affordable Care Act is a divisive and flawed piece of legislation precisely because it was passed by a Democratic majority without any support from or compromise with Republicans". I disagree, the republicans have always made this a political issue and not a people issue. They act out of spite rather than showing any willingness to compromise. Today despite all the negative media hype only 23 percent of the people want congress to make the bill fail. The majority either approve it or want improvements made to the law. Furthermore there are reports that in many parts of the country premium costs are going down. In the last two years, including 2014, my company's premium costs have increased very little.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 23, 2013 6:11 a.m.

    This is not a ten percent "liberal" versus ten percent "conservative" football game. We should not let the fringe elements blog control. Reasonable people do not shut down the government.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 22, 2013 6:26 p.m.

    "I don't know everything about Obamacare but I have serious reservations about it just because President Obama and everyone who voted for it exempted themselves from it!"

    Actually, it appears you don't know anything, or you would know that Congress and their staff is NOT exempt from Obamacare.

    Congress and their staff are now required to purchase their health insurance from the exchanges being set up. No other employees working for a large employer are required to use the exchanges. Just Congress.

    Sept. 22, 2013 4:32 p.m.

    The vast majority of the "hundreds of thousands" of workers who have had their hours cut because of "Obamacare" were working 32 hours per week so their employers would not have to offer them benefits. They are not working 29 hours per week so their employers do not have to offer them benefits.

    The blame for this is not with the Affordable Healthcare Act but with the employers.

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    Sept. 22, 2013 4:31 p.m.

    @mike richards. My taxes have not gone up and actually have gone down and I consider myself middle class. As far as the constitution goes the federal government doesn't have the power to set up a central bank but it has and I have never heard a concern about it from most conservatives.

    As far as obamacare being the biggest tax increase in history can you prove this claim?

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Sept. 22, 2013 2:05 p.m.

    "I don't know everything about Obamacare but I have serious reservations about it just because President Obama and everyone who voted for it exempted themselves from it!"

    No JSB. They didn't exempt themselves any more then the exempted themselves from Medicaid.

    They had insurance. Just like I do. Just like you probably do. I will not be under Obamacare, and most likely you will not be either.

    A better statement would have been "They did not force themselves to be covered under Obamacare" (just like they didnt force me or you)

    YOu did get one thing right however. You dont know everything about Obamacare.

  • RG Buena Vista, VA
    Sept. 22, 2013 1:57 p.m.

    Obamacare is already failing, which is why Obama is already delaying many of its provisions, and his delays are not done legally. Congress must change the law, not the president, even if it is named after him. It is sort of like a banana republic dictator making it up as he goes. In fact, the law was passed only because of backroom deals, and now, Obama is still giving special exemptions to his friends - again, this goes against the "rule of law" and makes him a whimsical dictator. Of course, it was passed by a congress (well, the GOP didn't vote for it, only the dems) who didn't even read it. No wonder our constitution hangs by a thread. To all those who think the GOP fears Obamacare because it will work, think again. As rvalens2 expertly pointed about above, it is already causing big problems. Thousands of employees have already been moved to part time jobs because of it, and many large companies are no longer offering health coverage.

  • JSB Sugar City, ID
    Sept. 22, 2013 1:41 p.m.

    I don't know everything about Obamacare but I have serious reservations about it just because President Obama and everyone who voted for it exempted themselves from it! It's so fishy sounding. It's like being told that the government is going to provide a Yugo for everyone in America except the leaders who all get a tax provided Lexus. Why aren't the people who voted for Obamacare confronted with this hypocrisy? Why does the President escape from answering this question: If Obamacare is such a great program, why did you exempt yourself?

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Sept. 22, 2013 1:19 p.m.

    What astounds me is the carelessness that liberals show towards the Supreme Law of the Land. The Court told us that Congress has the authority to tax us, but they did not rule on the ObamaCare tax, because it had not been implemented. No damages could be proven. Assuming that the liberals have actually read the Constitution, none of them can show us in the "taxing authority" that the Federal government is authoried to TAX us for personal welfare. Seventeen "duties" are listed in that "taxing authority" (Article 1, Section 8). Health care is not on the list.

    The government started the insurance "crisis" under FDR when he froze wages. Employers couldn't increase wages, so they offered insurance as a benefit. Now, the Federal Government is telling it's "subjects" that the IRS will force them to pay the largest TAX ever levied on the American people. By the way, what did Obama promise to the poor and middle class about NOT raising their taxes? Does anyone believe anything that that man says?

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    Sept. 22, 2013 12:12 p.m.

    @mike richards. Joeblow is right. As much as die hard conservatives want obamacare to go away and want a market based solution they need to realize that something needs to be done about healthcare. We are talking about real humans and real problems not some utopia of the ideal society that conservatives want.

    The republicans should and can come up with something better than obamacare but the tea party will turn on them if they try. During the republicans debate for president the moderator asked something about healthcare(I can't remember the exact question) and someone in the audience said "let them die." And people cheered. I couldn't believe it. This is why republicans can not do anything because people are turning their backs to their fellow man.

    Im starting to wonder are we a society that will start charging for CPR before we help someone?

  • rvalens2 Burley, ID
    Sept. 22, 2013 12:12 p.m.

    @Roland Kayser

    ObamaCare is not going to work well. It is going to fail miserably.

    Here is what is going to happen and is already starting to happen.

    More and more "part time" workers.
    Much higher insurance premium rates for everyone.
    Firing of employees to reduce work forces to under 50.
    Employers dropping their insurance for their employees.
    Millions and millions of young people opting not to buy insurance.
    Employers insuring only their "employee," but not their spouse or kids (UPS).
    People paying the fines instead of the insurance fees due to the high cost.
    The working poor still being unable to pay their health care costs (even with the subsidies), due to the high 20% co-pays.

    Those who passed ObamaCare want it to fail. The "real goal" of ObamaCare is to force everyone into a "Singer Payer System," where the federal government controls everyone's health care.

    Currently, if I don't like my insurance company I can fire them. I'm not going to be able to do that with the Federal government.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Sept. 22, 2013 11:51 a.m.

    On the Brightside --

    Republicans can add ACA [Obamacare] to their basket of Red Herrings they are going to reverse each election cycle.

    Sort like; Abortion, Immigration, Wars, Taxes, ect.

    They SAY they will do something about to win votes,
    but in reality, they won't ever DO anything about them - they need and rely on them to win anything.

    Like when they accuse the Democrats of handing out FREE stuff to win votes.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Sept. 22, 2013 10:20 a.m.

    An article today in Forbes (hardly a liberal rag), states something that I have been harping on for years.

    "To state the obvious, Republicans have historically talked a good game about limited, less expensive government, but the expense of it always seems to grow on their watch."

    However, the right still seems to contend that the key to smaller government is to simply vote Republican. History does not support that conclusion.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Sept. 22, 2013 10:09 a.m.

    Mr Richards,

    People act like everything concerning health care prior to Obamacare was great (or at least sustainable). It was not.

    By virtually any statistics, health care in the US is the most expensive, and gives a very low return. It IS a problem, Obamacare or not.

    So, While I agree that Obamacare is not a great answer, the GOP would be far better served by putting forth a replacement plan of their own. You know, actually proposing legislation that does a better job.

    I realize that you will answer with "healthcare is not provided for in the constitution"

    Well, the free market system is not working either. SOMETHING must be done.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 22, 2013 10:08 a.m.

    This is the new spin. The ten percent radicals that want a shutdown could attack each other. The scare tactic os the desperate are comical.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Sept. 22, 2013 9:28 a.m.

    Rolands right, They are terrified it will work.
    Of course when it does, they, and the Heritage Foundation will then take ownership of it... again.

  • Big Bubba Herriman, UT
    Sept. 22, 2013 9:26 a.m.

    Good opinion article. I like the mandate portion of the Affordable healthcare act because I am tired of paying for the care of freeloaders (i.e., people who could buy insurance but don't). However, I don't see how the mandate is possible without a universal, single payer system that automatically deduct premiums from paychecks - that is where things get messy.

  • Linguist Silver Spring, MD
    Sept. 22, 2013 9:09 a.m.

    The ACA is based almost entirely on ideas and concepts promulgated by Conservative think tanks and politicians. It's not what most on the Left advocated.

    It leaves in place the current employer-based insurance system, and enlarges it to include commercial insurance marketplaces will help those who have previously been rejected by insurance companies or who, up till now, couldn't afford policies. can shop

    With or without the ACA, all of us pay for the uninsured. We've just been doing it in the least cost efficient way possible, including through the ER. Now at least everyone will be paying into the insurance market.

    Honestly, I don't think the GOP is afraid that the ACA will be an unmitigated disaster. We've already begun to hear whispers by politicians afraid that the public will "get hooked" on it (their words, not mine).

    There are better approaches to healthcare than insurance companies controlling "Death Panels" of who gets covered and for what, based on the profit motive. The ACA isn't perfect, but it does go a long way toward correcting what for too long we all just sort of accepted as a necessary evil.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    Sept. 22, 2013 8:44 a.m.

    There is panic on the Right as the ACA turns out to be a boon. Cruz admitted as much -- he's desperately afraid that people will get "addicted" to it and deprive him of his straw man.

  • Common-Tator Saint Paul, MN
    Sept. 22, 2013 8:00 a.m.

    "the annual federal deficit has begun shrinking on its own to levels not seen since the Great Recession, a consequence of a recovering economy"

    If this were true we wouldn't need to raise the debt ceiling. While it may be rising more slowly than 2, 4, or 6 years ago, the debt is still going up! I fail to see the logic in pundits congratulating themselves on only adding "less" to their grandchildren's credit card, rather than paying their own bills.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Sept. 22, 2013 7:03 a.m.

    I disagree with the editorial writers.

    Hundreds of thousands of Americans have had their hours cut back at work because of ObamaCare. Those families are suffering NOW. They need full employment NOW. Obama will delay the misery until after the 2014 election. Those families will not be returned to full employment until ObamaCare is removed. ObamaCare is a burden that those families cannot afford to bear.

    How many bankruptcies will occur because of reduced hours? How many other businesses will sustain collateral damage? If you can't pay your bills, are you going to take a vacation? How big is tourism to Utah? What would happen to many small towns if people stayed home? What would happen to their local economy?

    The Republicans are not shutting down the government. They have fully funded all government programs except ObamaCare. It will be the Democrats who shut down the government, led by Obama himself. As long as newspapers, including the Deseret News, falsely blame the Republicans, people will be misled. I'm surprized that the Deseret News would let themselves become an Obama pawn and print what he wanted to read, instead of printing the real facts.

  • Roland Kayser Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Sept. 22, 2013 12:30 a.m.

    Conservatives are not worried that Obamacare will be a disaster. If it is they can run against it and win for the next decade. They are worried that it will work pretty well and people will like it.