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In the hours working up to the government shutdown on Sept. 30, Republican members of the House Rules Committee were developing a strategy to keep a clean CR off the floor, guaranteeing the government would remain shut down.
Though at least 28 House Republicans have publicly said they would support a clean CR if it were brought to the floor -- enough votes for the government to reopen when combined with Democratic support -- a House rule passed just before the shutdown essentially prevents that vote from taking place.
With the Supreme Court having upheld the constitutionality of the ACA in June 2012, Republicans were left with only two approaches. First, despite the fact that health care is worst where the GOP does best, Republicans set out to undermine the implementation of Obamacare in almost every state they controlled. And to prevent the Obama administration from implementing the Affordable Care Act nationwide, they targeted the federal government itself with the same weapon they first threatened to detonate in the summer of 2011. That weapon was also nuclear.
In 2013, the hostage would be Obamacare.
But in the weeks and months after Obama's second inauguration, that wasn't the only item on the Republican ransom note. By March 2013, Politico reported, "House GOP leadership is also eyeing several bills to hike the debt cap with different budgetary reforms [which] include increasing the Medicare eligibility age, means testing Medicare and changing the formula for calculating government benefits." By May, another approach "gained significant traction -- and has been ricocheting around K Street and Capitol Hill -- would directly wed increases in the debt ceiling to progress in tax reform." By July, the price went up again as some Republicans began demanding President Obama essentially approve the Paul Ryan budget that had garnered the votes of 95 percent of Congressional Republicans three years running.
In other words, the Republicans were seeking a de facto coup d'état by other means. The government the American people twice elected would be defenestrated, not through violence, but by blackmail.
Come on... Do you really believe there is some kind of coup d'etat going on?