Obamacare foes Sarah Palin and US Sen. Ted Cruz have already formed a third party in a sense, according to the former Alaska governor and 2008 GOP vice presidential nominee.
Palin made this assertion early into the Texas senator’s 21 hour filibuster that centered on denying federal funding for Obamacare. In an ongoing series of polls, Obamacare continues to be very unpopular with the American people, which is part is prompting efforts on Capitol Hill to defund, modify, or delay the law, short of outright repeal.
No lawmaker on either side of the political aisle particularly favors a government shutdown. The US House of Representatives already passed a continuing resolution that funds the entire government (including programs with which they disagree) except for Obamacare, a.k.a. the Affordable Care Act. Although it’s a bit procedurally complicated, the Ted Cruz filibuster was an attempt to delay the Senate from eventually voting for cloture (i.e., ending debate) on the CR. Sometime in the next couple of days, it’s a foregone conclusion the majority Democrats will strip out the Obamacare defunding from the resolution (i.e., they will vote instead to full fund Obamacare) and then pass the entire government funding measure on a party line vote. Today the Senate voted 100-0 to proceed to a 30-hour debate on the measure. After the Senate votes on its version of the CR, it goes back to the House for a vote. The Senate and the House must eventually reach agreement on the same language, so the political ping pong match could continue for a while, which could suggest at least a brief government shutdown.
Some of the odd antipathy towards Cruz among members of his own party may among other things be based on jealously, grave concerns about how the whole thing will be spun by a hostile mainstream media if the GOP used parliamentary tactics to insist on Obamacare defunding, and perhaps because of the “we’ve always done it this way” mentality.
As far as a third political party, Sarah Palin told FNC’s Neil Cavuto (see embed above) that “I daresay we already have a third party. We’ve got the liberal Democrats, we’ve got the GOP machine, and then we’ve got the good guys, that’s the third party: Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Rand Paul, some of these guys working extremely hard on standing strong for what used to be the planks in the Republican platform… those are the players in a party whom I will support.”
Palin has not yet ruled out running for US Senate from Alaska because, as she has said on more than one occasion, Ted Cruz and the other Tea Party stalwarts on Capitol Hill need reinforcements.
In June, Palin flirted with the idea of bolting the Republican Party for similar reasons. In response to a Twitter question about forming a “Freedom Party,” Palin said that “I love the name of that party — the ‘Freedom Party.’ And if the GOP continues to back away from the planks in our platform, from the principles that built this party of Lincoln and Reagan, then yeah, more and more of us are going to start saying, ‘You know, what’s wrong with being independent,’ kind of with that libertarian streak that much of us have. In other words, we want government to back off and not infringe upon our rights.”
According to a Forbes report published today, Obamacare will double insurance rates for younger men and increase them by about 60 percent for younger women: “For months, we’ve heard about how Obamacare’s trillions in health care subsidies were going to save America from rate shock. It’s not true. If you shop for coverage on your own, you’re likely to see your rates go up, even after accounting for the impact of pre-existing conditions, even after accounting for the impact of subsidies.”