Should Republicans Push to Repeal Health Care?

This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," January 4, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: In the "Back of the Book" segment tonight: There is anger in the air over Obamacare, as you know, as the new House of Representatives is seated this week. As we have been reporting, there are pros and cons of voting to repeal the entire new law.

Joining us now from Washington is Fox News analyst Charles Krauthammer. So, there are a bunch of traps, political traps, for the Republicans who try to repeal Obamacare. List them for us.

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, FOX NEWS ANALYST: Well, it depends how you do the repeal. The passing of a resolution, which is going to happen next week in the House to repeal, there are no traps. That's a good idea. The country doesn't like Obamacare. It's a clean idea. It will carry all the way through till the presidential election. It will be a millstone around the necks of the Democrats.

The place where the traps are is the idea that some Republicans have to kill Obamacare between now and then while Obama is still in office by taking away the funding for aspects of it. And the trap here is that the -- the Republicans, in the end, I don't think, can actually stop it that way. This is the death by a thousand cuts. But I don't think it ends up in death. I think, in fact, there are very few Republicans who think it does.

And if you can't kill the king, then you shouldn't attempt it, because what will happen is it will look as if the, you know, the Republicans will end up taking away the money for a commission here, a provision here, adding to the chaos and the incoherence of it. And then when Obamacare, which is intrinsically chaotic, incoherent, inefficient, and extremely expensive, collapses, the Republicans will take the blame.

If there were one clean way to bring the bill down, to defund it in a way that would kill it, I'd be in favor. The problem is the only one way to do it is to take away, as you talked about last night, the individual mandate, meaning to force the voluntarily uninsured into getting insurance, because that's the source of the money.

O'REILLY: Well, the courts may do that anyway. The courts may do that anyway, but let's...

KRAUTHAMMER: But it's unlikely that the courts will actually end up doing it.

O'REILLY: I don't know about that. I think it will go to the Supreme Court.

KRAUTHAMMER: It will take a couple of years as well.

O'REILLY: Maybe, but they could fast track it because it's such a hot issue. But let's say that the new House passes a resolution. All the resolution is going to say, that "We in the House want this repealed," right? It's just going to be a statement of "We want to do it," not how we're going to do it.

KRAUTHAMMER: Well, it's not a statement of repeal. It's actual repeal. But the problem is the Senate won't pass it. If the Republicans will capture the Senate and the presidency in 2012, they just have to reintroduce that bill of repeal. The Senate approves it. The president will sign it, a Republican Senate. And it's dead. So if you want to win the 2012 election…

O'REILLY: OK. What I'm trying to get across to the folks is this, OK. You're going to vote up or down on whether you want the law or not, and in the House it's going to be "we don't want it," because the Republicans hold the House. But there's not going to be attachments on the end of that bill saying this goes, this goes, this goes, this goes. It's just going to be "we don't want any of it."

Here's the problem with that: There's some good stuff in that bill. And that's what the Democrats are going to grab onto. Ooh! They want the greedy insurance companies to be able to throw you off the rolls after you get sick. See what I'm talking about?

KRAUTHAMMER: I do. But the Republicans -- the Democrats have argued that all through 2010. Here are the goodies. Your child can stay on insurance until he's 26. There's not going to be a lifetime cap, etc. People have heard that over and over again.

But they also know what's in Obamacare: the forced mandate, the fact that it's going to cost over a trillion dollars, the lack of a choice, the way you really are not going to be end up keeping your own insurance.

And on balance, we got the verdict on November 2. Overwhelmingly, if you were a Democrat and you supported Obamacare and you were not in a safe Democratic district, you were a goner. So it isn't as if these arguments are new. They are old. People have heard them. They weighed the pros and the cons. The cons infinitely outweigh the pros.

O'REILLY: Real quick, is the Senate even going to vote on this? Are they even going to hear it?

KRAUTHAMMER: Yes, it will. And they'll probably vote it down. And that means it will be an issue running up to the 2012 campaign.

O'REILLY: 2012, OK.

KRAUTHAMMER: And it's going to help the Republicans.

O'REILLY: All right. Charles, thanks very much. As always, we appreciate it. Happy New Year.

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