Republicans in Congress are counting on "Obamacare" being the gift that keeps on giving in this fall's midterm elections, though some others in the GOP question whether that's enough.
Decrying the Affordable Care Act has become a fixture of the GOP's election year strategy. To boot, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, opened his press conference on Thursday decrying the "devastating consequences" of the law for Americans.
But some Republicans are questioning whether staking the 2014 campaigns on Obamacare alone is a wise wager. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, R, told the Washington Post it wasn’t enough to make 2014 a referendum on the healthcare law and that Republicans must offer, “detailed policy solutions, detailed ideas of what we would do differently.”
When questioned today if the House GOP was focusing too much on "Obamacare," Boehner said it was important for the GOP to have "Better solutions on Obamacare, better solutions on getting our economy going again, and that's where our focus will be."
When pressed for specifics, Boehner pointed to tax reform and a GOP healthc are alternative as things that could be seen on the House floor later this year -- both ambitious issues that the GOP latch onto in this election year.
It's unclear when the House might consider these initiatives; the House GOP Conference is so divided that many aides privately admit putting members on the record for controversial votes is not an easy task, especially ahead of primary season when there is no pressing deadline for the legislation.
Boehner admitted as much today: “So there is a certain amount of reality that we have to deal with, even though some days it doesn't look that way.”
First published February 27 2014, 11:35 AM
Luke Russert joined NBC News in August 2008 as a correspondent based in Washington, D.C. Russert currently reports from Capitol Hill on the House of Representatives for â€œNightly News with Brian Williams,â€ â€œTODAY,â€ MSNBC and NBCNews.com.
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Since late 2011 Russert has served as a guest host on various MSNBC programs including: â€œWay Too Earlyâ€ â€œThe Daily Rundown with Chuck Toddâ€ â€œAndrea Mitchell Reportsâ€ â€œNOW with Alex Wagnerâ€ and â€œThe Cycle.â€
From March 2006-2010, Russert co-hosted the sports radio talk show "60/20 Sports" with political pundit James Carville on Sirius-XM Satellite Radio. On "60/20 Sports" he interviewed the likes of former President Clinton, former President George Bush, Bill Russell, Cal Ripken Jr. and Lance Armstrong.
In May of 2009, Russert was honored with the Marlin Fitzwater Award for Leadership in Public Communication from Franklin Pierce University, an award meant to honor individuals who have made significant contributions to public discourse in the spirit of a healthy democracy. Heâ€™s also received an honorary degree from Wingate University in North Carolina.
Russert graduated from Boston College with a double major in history and communications. He is the son of the late Tim Russert and Vanity Fair writer Maureen Orth. Russert lives in Washington, D.C., with his pug Chamberlain.