GOP lawmaker confesses: Republican pledge to repeal Obamacare is 'one of the biggest shams in history'
President Barack Obama laughs during a meeting in the Oval Office, Jan. 24, 2011. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

The Republican Party has pledged for seven years now that it would repeal the Affordable Care Act -- but now that it's in a position to do so, it suddenly seems to have gotten cold feet.

Talking with the Washington Examiner's Byron York, one anonymous Republican lawmaker acknowledged that many Republicans in Congress don't actually have any desire to fully repeal Obamacare, despite the fact that it has been a staple of the party's platform for multiple election cycles.

"A pure repeal would get less than 200 votes," the lawmaker admitted, even as he fumed that he would like to see the law entirely repealed. "It really is one of the biggest political shams in history — many of these members would not have been elected without promising repeal, and now they are wilting."

Why are so many Republicans queasy about doing something they vowed to do for years? According to York, they believe that doing so would badly hurt people in their districts -- and thus kill their hopes of getting reelected.

"The reason is fear," York explains. "When the lawmaker said colleagues don't want repeal "because of their district," that was another way of saying the members are all representatives, and the voters they represent don't want repeal."