Major GOP Rebranding Setback for John Boehner

Republican rebranding

Republican rebranding

There are increasing signs that the goose is cooked on Republican rebranding. It ain’t gonna happen. And the latest sign comes in a major setback for House Speaker John Boehner who earlier seemed poised to set a political trap for the White House — enough of a trap that the White House had issued a statement about the plan. But the plan is now dead.

And who killed it? Yes, the Dems played a role — but they were greatly helped by conservatives in the House who’ve continued to use their “Just Say No” mantra, this time against their own party. Talking Points Memo:

Amid opposition from conservative members and Democrats, House Republican leaders abruptly cancelled a vote on legislation designed to simultaneously undermine a progressive piece of Obamacare and boost the party’s credibility with voters who support protections for people with preexisting medical conditions.

The legislation would have transferred $3.6 billion from the Affordable Care Act’s prevention and public health fund to a temporary, underfunded high-risk pool plan in the law to cover sick people with preexisting conditions for the rest of 2013, until Obamacare’s guarantee of insurance coverage for all people kicks in.

Republicans described it as an effort to help sick people where President Obama had failed.

The move is a significant blow to GOP leaders and their efforts to soften the party’s image. It reflects their inability to secure sufficient conservative buy-in for even modest legislation aimed at improving the Republican party’s brand, and suggests that their only real hope for moderating the GOP’s reputation is to buck the right and pass genuinely moderate and bipartisan legislation with Democratic support.

On that I say not just DMML (Don’t Make Me Laugh), but also FC (Fat Chance).

The legislation failed because it was neither a straight attack on the ACA, which likely could have passed with Republican votes alone, nor a genuine effort to improve it. It was a backdoor attempt to damage a permanent piece of Obamacare — which alienated the entire Democratic party — in order to temporarily bolster another part of the law, costing them conservative votes.

Earlier in the day, conservative GOP members spoke out against the measure, lamenting that it merely tinkers with the law when they wanted nothing less than repeal.

I.E. The 21st century conservatives in the House (who are not to be confused with traditional conservatives) won’t even compromise with their own party leadership on something that could bring them longterm political gain.

Some said they opposed the high-risk pool portion of the law to begin with, despite its popularity among many Republicans and conservative health care wonks.

“Subsidizing health care is not what Republicans should be about,” Rep. Raul Labrador (R-ID) said at a Capitol Hill event organized by the Heritage Foundation.

Prediction: I would NOT be surprised to see immigration reform die in the House or be watered down so much that Hispanic groups say it isn’t real immigration reform.

GO HERE to read more on why Republican rebranding will fail.

NOTE: An earlier less edited version of this inadvertently appeared on TMV for a few hours. The correct version is now up. We regret the glitch.

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  • sheknows

    The rebranding attempts by the Republican party have been more than obvious, especially during Mitt Romney’s campaign. The many faces he showed and the moral attributes they kept trying to convey all were transparent and yet they assured the Republican Vote. I don’t think anyone outside the party was fooled as much as angered or disgusted by the sad attempts to talk like a Democrat but act like a very, very, very, very conservative Rep.
    They just can’t change. They don’t GET it. They don’t undestand that you physically have to pass laws that actually HELP and protect those who are ill,elderly,disabled,students or poor.
    They just do not understand that you cannot fake compassion, you actually have to FEEL it.

  • zephyr

    Rebranding isn’t the same thing as change which occurs as the result of learning. This may seem obvious, but it isn’t obvious to the GOP.

  • The_Ohioan

    We Democrats have no influence over either moderate or radical elements in the GOP leadership and party. If on-the-ground Republicans want to change the GOP’s brand, they will have to get rid of the most far right nutsos and/or get rid of those currently in leadership positions over the next few elections. It wouldn’t hurt for them to make a concerted effort to discourage the talk radio mischief-makers at the same time.

    If you like what the GOP party has become, keep on voting in the tens of millions for people like Ms. Palin and Mr. Romney. And don’t complain about the results. We will complain for you. :-)

  • SteveK

    Congressional Job Approval – 4/25/13


    12% Approve
    72% Disapprove

  • slamfu

    “They just can’t change. They don’t GET it.”

    And that right there pretty much sums up the GOP. Their sad attempt at”rebranding” is just hopeless. They are just shy of publicly asking “how come those welfare mooching wetbacks don’t vote for us?” and scratch their heads at the unfairness of it all. Even the term rebranding shows just how much they don’t get it. Like we didn’t understand the hidden subtext behind Romney writing off 47% of the nation, or that doubling down on the Bush policies is a bad idea, if only they’d communicated better we’d be on their side. Note to the GOP: WE GOT THE MESSSAGE. WE HEARD YOU THE FIRST TIME. WE THINK YOU ARE WRONG.

  • Rambie

    The whole “Rebranding” effort is a joke. As Slam says, the GOP thought it was just their messaging not their polices that are being rejected.