Health Care Fight Is A Primer On Thwarting D.C. Spending Sprees

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Even as the national debt now exceeds $33 trillion, conservatives can take some measure of solace in the ways they are reducing spending. Washington isn’t reducing the national debt — not by a long shot, sadly — but having a Republican majority means conservatives can succeed at some modest measures of damage limitation.

Two weeks ago, I analyzed in these pages why Republicans wanted to pass legislation extending a mandatory spending program originally created by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders as part of Obamacare. Last week, House leaders tried to bring that bill to the floor — but abandoned their efforts before it even came up for a vote.

The story of this policy U-turn demonstrates conservatives’ influence in preventing new spending and the pressure points in the ongoing debate over next year’s budget.

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