NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Factions within the GOP want to defund the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, and in the process they're dividing and weakening the GOP, especially the leadership.How can GOP elected officials make such an obvious miscalculation that has a massive downside and almost zero upside? Does anyone think that a piece of legislation that doesn't fund the ACA will make it through the Senate? Even if the Senate did somehow pass it, and it landed on Obama's desk, it would receive the fastest veto on record. You know it, I know it, and certainly the GOP calling for the removal of funding knows it. So why is it happening, and why is taxpayer money wasted on the issue? I have a theory, and it includes guns, chess and beer. This legislation is already on its way. In fact, parts of the law have already been implanted for a while now. Tanning salons pay higher taxes, and many young adults remain on their parents' insurance long after they otherwise would have left. For the government, so far so good. It legislated benefits without spending much of its own money. The next step of ACA is where the boots hit the ground: subsidies, penalties, and enough regulations to make any bureaucrat happy for a lifetime. Sure, the whole thing doesn't pass the smell test, but why would Republicans want to step between the public and the Democrat-owned ACA? Why give Democrats an out and the ability to say, "It would have worked great if only for the Republicans not giving it a chance." It's just utterly stupid to slow down what everyone that understands economics already knows: It's doomed to fail (at least in current form). In this particular case, the Republicans remind me when I was about 7 or 8 years old and visited my grandparents. It was during the holidays, and like many grandfathers in Wisconsin, mine was enjoying a beer. I watched him and decided that I truly wanted to have a beer, too. My grandfather was my hero, so it's not a surprise I wanted to be like him, and after I gathered enough courage, I asked whether I could have one too.
My grandmother quickly replied, "Absolutely not." My grandfather, on the other hand, had a different perspective, one that the GOP should consider. My grandfather decided to overrule my grandmother (something that rarely happened and made me nervous to watch), poured half a glass of beer and encouraged me to enjoy it. I took one taste and decided I hated it, but I took one more just to try to save face. My grandfather understood that if he said yes it would end my curiosity. For the same reasons, The GOP should fund the ACA and let the public get a true taste of it. The ACA will implode on its own when employees and employers realize they are receiving much smaller paychecks because they are paying much more in insurance premiums than they otherwise would. Back to why. The Republicans who are threatening to defund the continuing resolution understand theater much more than they understand the game of chess. In chess, the object of the game is to win by not allowing capturing of your king. In almost every game, you will sacrifice pawns, bishops and even your queen to win the game. Each piece is like a battle in a larger war. Instead of keeping their eye on the prize, many in the GOP are shooting at anything that moves because it makes for exciting TV. Along comes a bill and they want to shoot it with ACA defunding. The continuing budget resolution comes along, and they want to shoot that with ACA defunding, and so on, ad nauseum. All along, they fail to realize they have only so many bullets and risk not having any when the time comes when they will genuinely need them. If the GOP membership is smart, it will lose the theatrics and focus on what genuinely matters. Otherwise, the Democrats may figure out a way to place the ACA failure on the GOP, and that would be a failure the GOP doesn't want to own. Follow @RobertWeinstein This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.