Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
October 4, 2015

McConnell: ‘Shutting Down the Government Will Not Stop Obamacare’

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told a crowd at a health care forum in Kentucky on Tuesday that while he does not like the president’s health care law, shutting down the government over funding it “will not stop” it from existing.

“I’m for stopping Obamacare, but shutting down the government will not stop Obamacare,” McConnell told the audience at Baptist Health Corbin, according to a WYMT-TV reporter at the event.

Several conservative senators — including Ted Cruz of Texas, Mike Lee of Utah and Marco Rubio of Florida — have said the GOP should not vote to fund the government unless they can stop money from flowing to Obamacare. Of course, the effort is likely to go nowhere, given that the Democratic-controlled Senate would never approve such a measure and President Barack Obama certainly would never sign it into law.

Other Republicans have opposed trying to use such a maneuver for exactly that reason.

Sen. Richard M. Burr, R-N.C., even called a shutdown over the health care law the “dumbest idea” he’d ever heard of. But for McConnell to hint that he might not support to the tea party-backed effort is a bit of a surprise. He has recently tended to publicly back pushes from the more conservative wing of his party, particularly those championed by fellow Kentuckian Rand Paul, and he is facing a tea party-inspired primary challenge.

The political dangers of a government shutdown showdown are very real for Republicans, and that McConnell would imply that, to constituents at home, demonstrates how problematic this particular divide in the party is.

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  1. godblessusa

    Aug. 13, 2013
    4:47 p.m.

    “…demonstrates how problematic this particular divide in the party is.”

    The divide in the GOP is between those in touch with reality and those not.

  2. waypasthadenough2

    Aug. 14, 2013
    10:46 a.m.

    Why do my comments keep disappearing????????????

  3. JIMH

    Aug. 15, 2013
    6:43 p.m.

    Shut that sucker DOWN……..If Congress controls the purse strings, well, they ONLY have a majority in the Senate……..They can pass whatever bills they want on party-line votes……Won’t get one damn thing past the House……Shut it down, starve the beast until it gets weak………

  4. Rene Saucier

    Sept. 19, 2013
    4:55 p.m.

    Nobody is asking you to shut the government down. Go ahead and fund the government, but not Obamacare. This will delay its implementation so it can be repealed later.

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