The Spectacle Blog

Daschle Sees Defunding as a “Very Serious Threat” to ObamaCare

By on 10.22.10 | 11:19AM

Tom Daschle, one time nominee to be the Secretary of Health and Human Services and White House health care czar, has said that he sees the prospect of Republican-led defunding efforts as a "very serious threat" to the national health care law.

Asked by Kaiser Health News which aspect of the pushback against ObamaCare worries him the most, Daschle said:

Well, there are three major threats. There’s the legal threat. I’m not too concerned about that. We’ve already seen one decision in Michigan. I’m very hopeful that as we go through the courts and the legal process that we’re going to continue to be sustained and I have reasonable confidence that we will be. I’m not too worried about repeal efforts, because I don’t think those will go anywhere.

I do think defunding is a very serious threat and we have to be concerned about that. And I’m concerned about implementation. We’re electing 37 governors in this cycle. Those governors are going to have a lot to say with regard to the enthusiasm and the success of implementation. Because so much of what happens is going to happen at the state level. Now, we have a fallback position where the federal government can step in if the states don’t do what the law requires. So that fallback gives me some confidence that we’re going to have continuity with implementation.

I wrote about the strategy of defunding ObamaCare should Republicans take at least one chamber of Congress here. Last week, Rep. Paul Ryan told me there were limits to this strategy. And I reviewed Tom Daschle's new book on ObamaCare here.

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