Republicans in Congress hope to "defund or delay" the Affordable Care Act by attaching language to a bill that would temporarily fund the federal government. If their "continuing resolution" budget is passed, it would end the shutdown.
Democrats won't go for it.
They say debate over the Affordable Care Act is settled. It was signed into law. The Supreme Court ruled on it. And there was a Presidential election in which it was debated. It's time to move on, they say.
Move on? Fat chance. The federal government has been partially shut down over the fight.
And now politicians seem to be waiting to see where the political pressure builds -- meaning they're waiting to see how you react.
Here's what one Republican said to the press after the shutdown. From the New York Times:
“We’ve passed the witching hour of midnight, and the sky didn’t fall, nothing caved in,” said Representative Steve King, Republican of Iowa, who still believes Republicans can achieve “the end of Obamacare.” “Now the pressure will build on both sides, and the American people will weigh in.”
And here's what some of them are saying off-camera:
Two of these 16 people speak for you, as a Michigander, in Congress (one senator, and one representative).
Here's a map of Michigan's current congressional districts (double click on the map to zoom in):
Here's who voted to insert language to delay parts of the Affordable Care Act into the budget bill (all the Republicans), and here's who did not support that idea (all the Democrats).
Voted in support of the budget bill to delay the Affordable Care Act
- Justin Amash (R-MI 3rd District) “Simply pathetic that Pres Obama will negotiate w/ Iran but refuses to negotiate w/ Republicans. He'd rather shut down gov't than compromise.”
- Dan Benishek (R-MI 1st District) "Since the beginning of this debate, I have been looking for bipartisan solutions that keep the government open while putting the brakes on the President’s health care law."
- Kerry Bentivolio (R-MI 11th District) “Republicans were given control of the House of Representatives because the nation does not support Obamacare and want it changed.”
- Dave Camp (R-MI 4th District) “The House has made repeated offers to keep the government open while defunding, delaying or waiving all or parts of the health care law. Instead of negotiating with us, Washington Democrats have chosen to shutdown the federal government.”
- Bill Huizenga (R-MI 2nd District) "We've done nothing but negotiate, move our positions; they are refusing to do so."
- Candice Miller (R-MI 10th District) “The House has attempted three times to send legislation to the Senate to avert a government shutdown and provide protections to every American from undue burdens -- and each time the Senate has said no, they will not negotiate.”
- Mike Rogers (R-MI 8th District) “We are still waiting for the Senate to start talking with the House, come to the table, and begin a dialogue... We will pass additional emergency measures in the coming days as we wait for President Obama and Senate Democrats to drop their refusal to negotiate.”
- Fred Upton (R-MI 6th District) “I know some of my colleagues have suggested that they will not support [a continuing resolution] unless the Affordable Care Act is defunded. I think this would be a lousy idea and certainly harm the most vulnerable.”
- Tim Walberg (R-MI 7th District) “While the President and the Senate insist on keeping the phone lines open with Iran, Syria, and Putin, they refuse to even talk with the House about a compromised way to move this country forward.”
Voted against the budget bill to delay the Affordable Care Act
- Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI) “We weren’t shutdown on 9/11. We kept going. There was a physical attack on us. Now you got people who are doing an economic attack on us, saying they will not allow this government to function unless they get their way on a particular issue.”
- Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) “They have come here to shut the government down, and they are pretty happy today because they finally have done it, even if it is only for a short time.”
- John Conyers (D-MI 13th District) “Unfortunately, out of fear of alienating their Tea Party friends, House Republican Leadership appears to lack the political will to put the interests of our country first.”
- John Dingell (D-MI 12th District) “After targeting the Affordable Care Act with unrealistic demands, House Republicans are now attempting to force Congress to prioritize aspects of essential government service that all Americans rely on. This half-cooked public relations move will not work, and the American people will not stand for more games.”
- Dan Kildee (D-MI 5th District) “Every parent knows that if a child is throwing a tantrum, you don’t just give them what they want and expect them to never throw a fit again. House Republicans – led by the Tea Party – are acting like spoiled children, shutting the government down because they can’t have it their way.”
- Sander Levin (D-MI 9th District) “Unfortunately, House Republicans continue to keep the government shutdown to try and keep people from exercising their rights under this new law.”
- Gary Peters (D-MI 14th District) “When political gridlock undermines our economic uncertainty and makes it harder for Michigan middle class families and small businesses, it’s not a game – it’s bad faith.”
- Melanie Kruvelis and Lucy Perkins, Michigan Radio Newsroom