I read an article the other day that suggested the reason the Repubs are so gung ho on repeal of Obamacare is that they put all their eggs in their promise to their base that they would get it done. But I actually think if they repeal it they’re putting the final nail in their coffin. Even people that voted Republican were coming out at the town halls to object. And millions of old folks that rely on Medicare are going to vote against these people if they repeal.
I don’t work inside the beltway so I guess I’m supposed to defer to the pundits. But I disagree with the popular sentiment that these guys have boxed themselves in. I think McConnell and Ryan could have had it both ways. They could have let all their constituents keep the health insurance they now have and still could have gone to their base and said “we tried, we really did, but you saw the Dems and two or three defectors screw us.”
They have an easy (and factually accurate) place to put the blame and I don’t think it would have necessarily cost them their majority. Susan Collins would probably still be pretty safe in Maine. Same for McCain (his health status complicates things but if something happens to him in the short term, Arizona has a Republican Governor to replace him).
The Republicans are so far gone in their efforts to do Trump’s bidding that they may have already lost the mid-terms. But right now, at least that proposition still stands at “maybe.” I think the only thing that really guarantees it is if they succeed.