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Tue Aug 1, 2017, 02:29 PM

House Republicans have spent 378 hours on votes to undercut Obamacare that went nowhere

Source: WaPo, by Philip Bump

After one of the recent failed Senate votes to overhaul Obamacare, a reader posed a question: How much time has Congress spent actually trying to throw out the law, without success? Itís a good question, and one for which we can probably never have a concrete answer.

As it turns out, you can figure out precisely how much time a bill spent in debate on the floor of the House, thanks to data at Congress.gov. So, setting aside those bills that were signed into law, we estimate that, between 2011 (when Republicans took control of the body) and this year, the House spent about 377.6 hours debating and passing anti-Obamacare bills that never became law.

How much time is that? Itís nearly 16 solid 24-hour days. If you assume Congress actually only works 12-hour days ó a generous assumption ó thatís a full month of time spent on an effort that went nowhere. Itís like they added in an extra August recess over that six-year period.

Itís a valid question to ask whether this is a bad thing. Is it bad for legislators to debate and pass bills even if they donít become law? I suspect that the point of the reader who emailed was that a lot of time had been burned on a fruitless enterprise ó and one that, until Jan. 20 of this year, was obviously fruitless, given the president. These days, of course, passing a law to repeal Obamacare might actually be something that could take effect.

If only Republicans in the House had proposals that could pass the Senate.

Read it all at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2017/07/31/house-republicans-have-spent-378-hours-on-votes-to-undercut-obamacare-that-went-nowhere/?utm_term=.3364992bb9b7&wpisrc=nl_health202&wpmm=1

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