Fox News contributor and GOP strategist Karl Rove revealed the real motive behind calls to delay implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA): To buy time until the election of a Republican president who would be willing to repeal the law in its entirety.
On the September 23 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, Rove discussed his previous criticism of Republicans and conservative media figures who have threatened to force a government shutdown if President Obama doesn't acquiesce to right-wing demands to completely defund the ACA, also known among conservatives as Obamacare. Congress must pass a continuing resolution by October 1 in order to fund the federal government. If not, the government will partially shut down. Republicans in Congress have insisted that they will only pass the resolution if it excludes funding for the ACA, one of Obama's signature accomplishments.
Rove opposed the idea of forcing a government shutdown, largely for fear of the political consequences. Instead, he pushed the idea that Republicans should attempt to delay implementation of the law -- currently scheduled to be fully implemented on October 1, 2013 -- until a Republican president is elected. "We need to have a President who will sign a measure defunding, repealing, getting rid of, and replacing Obamacare, and until we have a president who is going to do that we are going to be fighting."
When Fox host Bill O'Reilly pointed out that the next presidential election is three years away, Rove shrugged it off, responding, "That's why I favor a delay strategy."
Partial transcript (emphasis added):
O'REILLY: Cruz, he may be the guy to take the tea party up again.
ROVE: Yeah, well, we'll see. Here is the deal though. We need to have a President who will sign a measure defunding, repealing, getting rid of, and replacing Obamacare, and until we have a president who is going to do that we are going to be fighting [rearguard actions].
O'REILLY: That's three years away.
ROVE: Right, and that's why I favor a delay strategy. I think it is better for us to get a narrative going that says Democrats and Republicans alike say President Obama, if you want to give the corporations a year's delay, you gotta give the working man and woman a year's delay by delaying the individual mandate.