In a move that surprised no one, House Republicans voted early Sunday morning to delay Obamacare for one year and repeal its tax on medical devices, reports CNN.com.
The highly anticipated vote came after midnight. The House voted 232-192 to delay the Affordable Care Act, which is scheduled to launch Oct. 1, and voted 248-174 for the medical device tax repeal.
As expected, the vote was largely along party lines.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Virginia) immediately tweeted the vote, saying that President Barack Obama needed to rise above “stubborn partisanship.”
This move increases the chance of a government shutdown as the plan gets kicked back to the Senate, where it is sure to be rejected.
President Obama has threatened House Republicans with his executive veto power if their proposal were to reach his desk and has made it clear that negotiations are not on the table.
The government will shutdown at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday if a deal isn’t reached. And with no plans to convene the Senate before Monday that is a very real possibility.
As expected, a bill to guarantee pay for military personnel during the potential shutdown passed 423-0, a fact that House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) tweeted shortly after the vote:
The Senate passed a bill that would keep the government funded, while rejecting the House’s provision to defund Obamacare. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) called the Republican strategy “pointless” and suggested that Republicans “get a life.”
“Here’s a president who, less than a year ago, won the election by five million votes, five million votes,” Reid said. “Obamacare has been the law for four years. Why don’t they get a life and talk about something else? People deserve better.”
Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) spoke for more than 21 hours against Obamacare last week on the Senate floor, a move Reid called a “big waste of time.”
An exasperated Obama accused the GOP of “grandstanding” and told them, “Any Republican in Congress who’s currently watching, I’d encourage you to think about who you’re hurting.”
The next few days will be interesting as House Republicans continue to expect the POTUS to fold under pressure and compromise to avoid a government shutdown.