A dearth of news during a congressional recess might explain a flurry of stories last week about the healthcare strategy Republicans will promote in this year's midterm elections. By Friday, policy analysts and academics—along with a House GOP leadership aide—made it clear: A substantive healthcare proposal from Republicans won't appear any time soon.
The economy, not the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, will be the major issue leading up to the elections, predicted Larry Jacobs, a political science professor at the University of Minnesota. But the law will come into play for Republicans for a reason unrelated to healthcare: voter turnout. Although most Americans don't want to see the law repealed, Jacobs said, the Republican Party's base remains vehemently opposed and responds enthusiastically to rallying cries for more repeal votes.