First, there's this from Rep. Richard Hanna on the Republican approach to health care reform.
They've complained for two years about this health care bill. They've offered alternatives, but they're not alternatives that are in many ways viable. Well, now they have to put up the goods. They have to say 'here's what we're presenting, here's why it will work.'...
Let's see what they do. I say give them a chance. Let the Republican Party put up or shut up.
And then there's Rep. Sean Duffy on the same topic.
I don't believe that we should ... just do a straight-up repeal. My position during the campaign and today is, let's reform the reform or repeal and replace. And so, I wasn't gonna vote for it. But I went and spoke to the leadership, and I got a commitment that we were going to bring forward our ideas on this replacement bill.
I suggest that you not hold your breath on that one Sean. As we saw this week, some moderate Democrats tried to start a conversation about alternatives to the individual mandate. What was the response of Republican leadership? Just say no.
With a strategy in place and pressure from the more unhinged elements of the Republican Party, it seems clear that they'll "stay the course" of tearing down rather than risk any attempt to build.
But as Steve Benen suggests when it comes to the leadership's recent capitulation to the more radical elements on deficit reduction, they might not have learned enough from recent history.
...Boehner had a credible plan going into this Congress -- don't overreach the way Gingrich did. That plan has now been scrapped because Boehner's caucus won't let him pursue it, positioning him as one of the weakest House Speakers in a generation.