Jonathan Cohn: Republicans don't want to talk about health care after failing to repeal Obamacare

Author and journalist Jonathan Cohn discussed his new book "The Ten Year War: Obamacare and the Unfinished Crusade for Universal Coverage" on Monday and explained that Obamacare was achieved and has remained in part due to the Republican Party's own lack of focus on health care.

"Universal health care is in like the DNA of the Democratic Party right. I mean this has been their crusade day going back to the Franklin Roosevelt, the New Deal. Harry Truman tried to do universal health care and it's been this ongoing effort," Cohn said while appearing on Hill.TV's "Rising"

When former President Obama was elected 2008, Democrats viewed it as their chance to pass universal healthcare with some compromises built in, Cohn said. He argued that by the time the Affordable Care Act was passed, the GOP had become "more extreme ideologically" and more "instinctively opposed" to Democrats.

"Republicans keep coming back to it. It becomes their focus as much as it was for the Democrats. They are going to repeal Obamacare, they get rid of it. And then they finally get their chance and lo and behold, it turns out that actually repealing a law is actually harder than it sounds," Cohn said. "You actually have to think through the policy implications, you have to do the work. Republicans hadn't done any of that."

Cohn says that the congressional Republicans' inability to repeal Obamacare when they controlled both the House and Senate served as a political lesson.

"My read on it is that Republicans politically have learned that lesson. They want nothing to do with health care right now and it's a losing issue for them and they'd just as soon not talk about it," Cohn said.