The House assistant Democratic leader said on Sunday that his party will campaign on President Obama’s controversial healthcare law in 2014.
“In fact, we set it up to run on it in 2014,” he continued. “We fully expect to run on it; we expect to win on it. The American people will be the winner.”
Clyburn noted that major provisions of the law are expected to go into effect on Oct. 1 and Jan. 1, 2014, leaving Democrats little choice but to make healthcare a part of their midterm election campaigns.
The Obama administration announced last month that they were delaying a mandate for companies that employ more than 50 people to offer healthcare until next year, which Republican critics suggested was a sign of trouble for the law.
Clyburn said he was not worried about potential glitches to the law making it harder to elect Democrats to Congress.
“If you go back to the founding of the country, every time we do something big, we have to go back and fix it,” he said. “We had to fix Social Security; we had to fix Medicare; and we’re going to have to fix ObamaCare because people change, things change, needs change.”
Clyburn said the healthcare law would become more popular in 10 years, drawing parallels to the early years of Social Security and Medicare.
“We’re not going to throw out the baby with the bathwater,” Clyburn said of Republican efforts to repeal the law.
“A lot of people do not understand the tax benefits that can come along with this, and when they do understand, it becomes very popular,” he said.
Appearing on the same show Sunday, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said there has been more than enough time for people to understand the healthcare law.
“People know what ObamaCare is and they don’t want it,” Priebus said.
Priebus said Republicans would continue trying to eliminate the healthcare law, though he said Obama would be responsible for a potential shutdown of the federal government over funding for the program that some GOP lawmakers have suggested.
“All Republicans are unified on one thing, and that is defunding, delaying, getting rid of ObamaCare,” Priebus said.
“The question is the tactics,” he continued. “If President Obama wants to shut the federal government because he insists on funding this monstrosity, then go ahead.”