The American people pay a similar amount for social services as citizens of European countries with supposedly lavish social safety nets. But there are two significant differences.
That they voted 46 times to repeal it, and shutdown the government to delay it should make the Republicans reluctant to pretend they are worried about how the Obamacare website is working. But shameless is their name and hypocrisy is their game.
Republicans are still targeting the Affordable Care Act, but their answer to the problems health care reform is already solving for millions of Americans hasn't changed much from that infamous audience response at the September 2011 GOP presidential debate.
While the nation has been fixated on the problems with HealthCare.gov and as conservatives spin them, a similar computer meltdown has been taking place largely off the radar of most households.
As I watch the talking heads all clutch their pearls over the insurance exchange website, I can't help but notice that none of them seem to know what's really happening out here to people who have to deal with the private insurance.
The GOP's shutdown debacle exposed a three-way-split within the party: Tea Party amateurs, cooler-headed conservatives and Establishment players. What's odd about this split is that it doesn't involve much in the way of ideological differences.
Remember in 2009, when Jim DeMint said health care reform would be President Obama's Waterloo? Four years later, defunding health care reform became the GOP's Alamo. But Republicans aren't done damaging their party, or the rest of the country, yet.
Taxpayers are already starting to pay dearly for the gamesmanship of the Tea Party Republicans, and the unwillingness of House Speaker John Boehner to stand up to them.
The GOP threw the Keep-Your-Hands-Off-My-Medicare Tea Partiers under the bus. And the guy who shoved first was Tea Party darling Paul Ryan who proposed that House Republicans forget about defunding the Affordable Care Act and cut Medicare instead.
Republicans are celebrating the consequences of the shutdown for two groups of Americans that conservatives despise: government workers and the millions of Americans who rely on the services those workers provide.
Maybe today's Republicans don't know that the Greatest Generation went through the depression and WWII, and their president throughout both was Franklin Delano Roosevelt, not Ronald Reagan.
The most important political story of our time is one that journalists wedded to the idea that ‘both sides do it’ are uncomfortable reporting: the wildly asymmetric polarization of our two major political parties.
The idea that the President did something wily by refusing to defund Obamacare is pretty funny. If anyone's done anything wily, it's the Republicans who deployed Nixon's madman theory. It seem to have persuaded the Democratic establishment.
Seven days into a government shutdown, and 9 days away from a potentially catastrophic breach of the nation’s debt limit, and the question everyone is asking is: who will blink first?
House Budget Chair Paul Ryan's Wall Street Journal oped, "Here's How We Can End This Stalemate," is being treated as an "olive branch." But it only amounts to a shift in demands, not any actual concessions.
At least 23 House Republicans and 200 Democrats would vote for a "clean" continuing resolution that would allow federal agencies to reopen without preconditions. But House Speaker John Boehner is refusing to allow that vote.
It's great that Senate Democrats are working on a plan to prevent financial disaster, but Americans would rather see Republicans end this economic hostage taking, and stop using our economy as a pawn in their political games.
Whatever happens with the current shutdown and various hostage negotiations, the fundamental definition of the Republicans as the de facto competent party --- the proverbial grown-ups --- has probably finally been shattered.
A Democracy Corps report challenges progressives to present a narrative and a set of values that speak broadly to the economic anxieties that most Americans share.
Newt Gingrich issued a call to arms to his fellow bomb-throwers: “Don’t cave on shutdown.” At least let’s name this for what it is: sabotage of the democratic process. And let’s be clear about where such reckless ambition leads.
Sorting out the allegedly "moderate" GOP Senators is a good place to start the week. The dynamic may very well be different from the House, where certain Republicans hate the shutdown, but aren't rushing to end it. Let's test this in the senate too.
The government shutdown is revealing how easily distracted we are by shiny objects. Tourist sites are important, but they fail to capture the economic pain that ordinary Americans, and especially the poor, will feel if the shutdown drags on.
Remember when we all assumed that sequestration could never hold and they'd just have to pull the plug and negotiate a reasonable budget when the going got tough? Yeah, that's worked out for us.
The GOP's shenanigans surpass even the worst childish behavior, and are far more damaging. The Republican-engineered government shutdown is doing real harm to real people, and endangering an already fragile economy.
Republicans are exercising the one power that the American People have not yet been able to take away from them: the power to destroy. Conservatives are “giddy” over shutting down the government.
The Tea Party tail wagging this dog seems to really believe that the country will rally to their side and force President Obama to junk his signature legislative achievement.
The past few days, as the Congress careened toward today's government shutdown, the media has been inundated with pox-on-both-their-houses framing of the issue. We have to stand up to the media on this.
Over the weekend, House Republicans approved a so-called compromise to avoid a government shutdown. However, their idea of negotiation was nothing more than ridiculous, right-wing demands they included in the continuing resolution.
If you want to understand how we got to the point of a government shutdown, ask any Republican exactly what they would cut from the budget, and ask them to give actual dollar amounts of how much money that would "save."
Listening to the Republicans lie outrageously on the Sunday shows about the catastrophic effects of a program that isn't even in effect (while denying that climate change exists!) is enough to give me a headache.
Unable to change their tone or their policies in order to widen their voter base, Republicans seem bent on undoing the results of two presidential elections. It would all be quite funny, if it wasn't all so crazy. Not to mention dangerous.
Negotiating with Republicans the way parents negotiate with tantruming children in the grocery store, by giving them a candy bar, is no longer operative in light of the GOP's absurd "wish list."
After the last election Republicans have one power left: the power to destroy the country. They are threatening to use it to get what they want. And what they want is to reverse the results of the last election.
What Cruz is doing is building a grassroots donor base. If he can pick up a few looney tunes billionaires,he could make a good run at it. He can't win, but it's never a good idea to allow anyone this extreme anywhere near real power.
On Tuesday, Senator Ted Cruz took the floor of the Senate to launch a pre-arranged, all-night fake filibuster. There was no way it would stop the Senate from voting on a continuing resolution to fund the government.
On Sunday, during a meeting with a group of unemployed workers, Pope Francis abandoned his prepared comments and railed against economic inequality. Hopefully, world leaders were listening.
I thought I understood the right. But this meltdown over a very tepid health care reform that keeps the system fully in the hands of the private insurance companies just floors me. We are watching behavior so absurdly over-the-top that it's downright
Republicans have painted themselves into a corner by appealing to racial fears and stoking the racial resentments of their base. Staying in that corner is a one-way ticket to political irrelevance. Getting out of it is going to be messy.
Conservatives have exchanged the "war on poverty" for a "war on the poor," using false assumptions about the failure of government programs. Three authors explain why they are wrong.