Dr. Boozman's Check-up

The Government Shutdown and Obamacare

What Does Senator Boozman Think of the Government Shutdown?

A government shutdown has real implications for seniors, veterans and hardworking Arkansas families who rely on the services provided by federal agencies.

Boozman has tried to prevent a shutdown, but there has been no willingness to on the part of Majority Leader Reid to compromise. He has refused to even allow the Senate to consider the last three House-passed continuing resolutions. And now he just shot down an effort to form a committee between the two chambers to resolve this and has stated he will not entertain the idea of individual spending bills to keep agencies like the

It’s time to come together and find commonsense solutions to our challenges. America functions best when we work through our differences and come together and address our country's problems.

Does Senator Boozman Oppose Obamacare?

YES. Senator Boozman has been fighting against Obamacare for nearly five years. He opposed Obamacare when Nancy Pelosi brought it to the floor of the House of Representatives. He’s voted to repeal Obamacare. He’s voted to defund ObamaCare. He’s voted to chisel away at parts of Obamacare. And he’s fought against Obamacare’s waste, abuse, and fraud.

Does Senator Boozman Support Defunding Obamacare?

YES. Senator Boozman has always supported defunding, delaying, repealing, and replacing Obamacare.

Does Senator Boozman Support the “Defund Obamacare Political Campaign” associated with the current CR?

NO. The current “Defund Obamacare Effort” is a misleading campaign. Some suggest that if Republicans threaten to shut down the government, we can force Harry Reid to defund Obamacare. This is simply not true. 

As Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) has said, the defunding claims are “tremendously erroneous” and “not intellectually honest.” The independent Congressional Research Service concluded that even with a government shutdown, Obamacare would remain alive and funded.  The vast majority of Obamacare spending is mandatory spending that Congress does not control.

Case in point: On the same day the government shut down, the Obamacare exchanges still launched, albeit with problems as we predicted. The wheels in motion cannot be stopped by defunding because of the manner in which the program is funded. We need another approach to stop this terrible law.

Does Senator Boozman Support a Government Shutdown to Repeal Obamaare?

NO. Causing a government shutdown does not move us closer to repealing or defunding Obamacare. In fact, shutting down the government is making it harder for us to repeal Obamacare. Instead of focusing on higher healthcare premiums, government rationing, Medicare cuts, and President Obama's false promises, the White House and the Senate Majority are playing political games. This distraction plays into President Obama's hand

Moreover, a shutdown is the wrong way to govern. In this fragile economy, it is simply not fair to hold Americans hostage for political gain. It’s not the right way to run government. It’s the very reason the American people hold Washington in low regard.

We must repeal Obamacare. However, we need to be smart about how we oppose this President and his agenda. President Obama will not sign legislation that destroys his signature initiative and the Democratic Senate majority won’t approve this legislation that accomplishes this. Moving forward, Senator Boozman will continue to fight against this failed law so the American people demand its full repeal.

Why did Senator Boozman support cloture on the Continuing Resolution?

Senator Boozman supported each of the House-passed bills to keep the government operating. The first bill the House sent over would have accomplished our goals of keeping the government operating and defunding Obamacare. Avoiding a government shutdown is a good policy that protects hardworking Americans. Unfortunately, that bill was changed. Majority Leader Harry Reid stripped language to defund this problematic law and Senator Boozman could no longer support it. This is not the end of our fight. We will continue our efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare with reforms that contain costs.

Senator Boozman voted for cloture on the first House-passed bill because it would defund Obamacare and keep the government operating. It defies logic to vote against a bill that accomplishes our objectives.

Failure to have obtained cloture would have only resulted in a government shutdown, which is eventually where Majority Leader Reid led us. However, failing to move that first bill forward would have put the blame for a shutdown squarely on the Republicans. A government shutdown doesn’t repeal Obamacare. The vast majority of Obamacare spending is mandatory spending that Congress does not control.

If President Obama were to somehow receive a continuing resolution that defunded his landmark law, he would veto it. We would need 67 votes in the Senate to override that veto. Simple math shows you that with a Democrat Majority, the numbers are simply not there.

There was no end game with this strategy, outside of a government shutdown, which is why Senator Boozman could not support it.

If you had been told anything different would result from voting against cloture, you were being misled.

Wasn't this the last chance to end Obamacare?  

Not by a long shot. This program is falling apart faster than it can roll out. We have seen the snags in the programs when it launched and there will continue to be problems. Leaders who helped usher the bill through Congress have called its implementation a ‘trainwreck.’ We have opportunities to capitalize on that by picking it apart piece by piece.