Once again Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is showing that he has an eye on a constituency bigger than hist existing base: he has come out against shutting down the government ty try and defund or halt Obamacare, the new-obsession with some GOPers:
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said Sunday that Republicans should “stand up and fight” against ObamaCare, but warned that forcing a government shutdown over funding for the law is the wrong strategy.
“I don’t think shutting down the government is a good idea, but I do think that we were elected, conservatives were elected, to try to stop this overreach, this government takeover of healthcare,” Paul told “Fox News Sunday.”
Paul said Republicans should use the desire to avoid a government shutdown to squeeze concessions out of Democrats, predicting that a spending bill that headed to conference committee could see a delay of the individual mandate or opening of the insurance exchanges.
“People want us to stand up and fight, I’m willing to stand up and fight,” Paul said. “We should use the leverage of controlling one-third of the government. We don’t control all of the government, but Republicans control the House of Representatives, they should stand up, use that power to at the very least make that law less bad, delay it, do something we can to protect the American public from the law.”
Shutting down the government and halting Obamacare has become a new litmus test to some Republicans, with some conservatives suggesting those who won’t do it are caving — or even worse, worse even than nonstop migranes or 10 ingrown toenails, means they are closet “RINOS.”
Last month, some 60 House Republicans sent a letter to Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) urging leadership to remove funding for the Affordable Care Act in its next continuing resolution, while Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) has spearheaded a similar push in the Senate.
But some GOP leaders — including House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) — have warned that Republicans won’t be able to stop implementation of the law through the budgetary process. Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) told the Associated Press the threatened shutdown was the “dumbest idea” he’d ever heard of.
But since when was something that was a dumb idea stop Tea Partiers, House conservatives or some new media commentators from embracing it?
That often makes it an agenda item these days.
Who would have thunk it? Rand Paul a closet RINO!
I was kidding. Paul is no RINO. But he is demonstrating a disturbing streak of logic and reasonableness in his utterings on this issue. His notion that the GOP House can put enormous pressure on the Democrats to delay the individual mandate and the opening of the exchanges is spot on. Take that to the conference committee and leave Senate Democrats with the uncomfortable decision of agreeing to the delay or appearing not to care about the massive security flaws that will be the hallmark of the state exchanges.
Whether House Republicans will go along with that plan is another question.
If I had to bet on this in Vegas on whether House Republicans will agree to this, I know how I’d bet…