But on the campaign trail, Democrats are ready to fight back. If Republicans want to cast the Affordable Care Act as a drain on businesses and a job killer, Democrats are ready to cast Republicans as insensitive and in the pockets of big insurance companies.
"Republicans claim to speak for the people, but the people spoke in the last election," Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spokesman Jesse Ferguson said. "Republicans will vote to put insurance companies back in charge of health care, raising prescription drug costs, denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions, and even driving people back into bankruptcy because of health care costs. Instead of solving our health care problem, Republicans would rather play games and try to score points."
And on Capitol Hill, Democrats are groaning at House leadership for wasting time. Without the Senate's pledge to re-examine health care and with Obama still in office, the votes is nothing more than symbolic and a campaign ploy to put vulnerable Democrats on the spot, they say.
Minority Whip Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md., told U.S. News as he walked out of the Capitol Wednesday evening that the House had blown countless hours and taxpayer dollars fighting for something that was dead on arrival in the Senate when automatic budget cuts are leading to furloughs and cuts to Headstart.
"It is a political vote, it's a campaign vote, it's a posturing vote, but we have a lot of substance to do and we are not doing anything on substance," Hoyer says. "Very frankly, this has been the least substantive Congress for which I have served."
But whether or not anything is going to come of the Obamacare repeal vote Thursday, freshmen members say their first repeal vote won't be their last.
"I think persistence is something that eventually provides a good outcome," Salmon says. "Ultimately the American people by a vast majority are not comfortable with where Obamacare is at right now or where it is headed."
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