As if begging for a Groundhog Day joke, House Republicans will vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act again on Tuesday. It'll be the 56th shot they've taken at the law, and just like every other time they've tried to erase President Obama's signature achievement, this attempt is doomed to fail. Republicans have nowhere near the veto-proof majority they'd need to kill Obamacare.
GOP leaders know it, too. They've stopped promising to repeal the law, and Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have taken the extra step of swearing up and down that they won't shut down the government over it again, either.
So why waste everyone's time with another futile repeal vote? The simple answer, as Boehner himself told Fox News's Bret Baier last week, is they're doing it for the freshmen—that is, the 47 House Republicans who just took office a month ago and have never had the high honor and privilege of voting to repeal Obamacare. By holding the vote, these lawmakers can head back to their districts and tell their constituents that yes, they did everything they could to get rid of the reviled law. "We're just getting it out of the way," one Republican aide told the Washington Examiner, reflecting a sentiment probably shared by a party leadership that has seen this game play out several times already.