Thinking Four Moves Ahead


Maybe this government shutdown stuff isn’t just talk.

For a piece we’re planning on running tomorrow we’re looking into the coalescing plans on the right of the GOP to attempt to defund the Health Care Reform bill if the Republicans take back the House in November, which certainly has to be seen at this point as a more likely than not proposition. What caught my attention is that they seem to have a group now interested in whipping the issue pre-election.

Now, that’s a dicey matter. And it’s clear that the leadership types in the GOP want to harvest all the anti-HCR juice they can, win elections with it and then agree to pass a repeal law that will either die in the Senate or die on Obama’s desk. But if they can whip the defunding stuff effectively, that might be trickier.

And there’s another point too. Obama’s veto pen can do a lot of stuff. He can veto a defunding bill too. The key though is that he’s got a government to run and he needs a budget. All of which suggests that this ends up pointing in the direction of a government shutdown type standoff. So crazy as it may seem, Dick Morris (broken clock twice a day and so forth) may be on to something.


Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of