Gohmert to Newsmax: Reid Going to 'Play' Shutdown Issue 'Down to the Wire'

Image: Gohmert to Newsmax: Reid Going to 'Play' Shutdown Issue 'Down to the Wire' Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, listens to proceedings as the House Rules Committee meets Saturday evening, Sept. 28.

Sunday, 29 Sep 2013 12:55 AM

By Todd Beamon

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Rep. Louie Gohmert told Newsmax in an exclusive interview on Saturday that "clearly" Senate Majority Harry Reid was going to "play" the threat of shutting down the federal government next week "down to the wire and then try to blame the Republicans."

"We're the ones who have compromised," the Texas Republican said, referring to the GOP. "We've been here ready to work — and they're the ones that took off on their merry way."

Gohmert joined his fellow House Republicans and voted early Sunday to finance the federal government through mid-December and delay funding for Obamacare for a year.

Obamacare: Massive New Rules Revealed for 2013

The GOP-controlled House amended a version of a continuing resolution that the Senate passed along party lines on Friday without language that would have fully defunded the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

"There are just so many broken promises that we need to slow this train wreck, this nightmare," Gohmert told Newsmax about Obamacare. "It's time to put the skids on this thing and slow it down before more people get hurt."

The House legislation, which also cancels a tax on medical devices that helps finance the healthcare law and provides pay for military personnel should the government shut down, was sent back to the Democratic-controlled Senate. The chamber resumes session on Monday at 2 p.m.

If no compromise is reached, the government will close when its fiscal year ends on Monday. The federal government last shut down for a total of 28 days between November 1995 and January 1996.

But Reid said on Saturday that the Senate would not approve any House measure that affected Obamacare in any way — and President Barack Obama vowed to veto any such legislation.

"Today’s vote by House Republicans is pointless," Reid said on Twitter after the House voted to set up final debate on the amended legislation Saturday afternoon. "The American people will not be extorted by tea party anarchists."

He added, "The Senate will reject any attempt to force changes to the health care law through a government funding bill or the debt ceiling."

At the White House, spokesman Jay Carney said, "Any member of the Republican Party who votes for this bill is voting for a shutdown.”

Gohmert told Newsmax that he did not want a government shutdown but that the House needed to send back a bill that gives "every Democrat a chance to tell Americans who are being hurt by Obamacare, 'I want you to continue to be hurt.'"

It is also critical that Republicans not acquiesce to Reid or the White House, he added.

"They've been saying for about three years, privately, that they think that if there is a shutdown, the Republicans will be blamed — and that really does help them," Gohmert said. "It's scared Republicans, so we've caved in over and over again for a while.

"The fact is, we've compromised; they have not," he added. "It's time to hold them accountable and not let them get away with shutting down the government and blaming other people when they are simply not doing their work."

Honestly, Gohmert told Newsmax, the Democrats are merely posturing on the entire shutdown issue.

"There's always been posturing by the White House, by Democrats. I was really hoping that the president would draw a red line, because we know he will move off red lines," he said.

"We know that a lot of times with the other side, it's just posturing — and then they turn around and end up being willing to work out a deal if they know that they're politically going to get hurt.

Obamacare: Massive New Rules Revealed for 2013

"I'm hoping people will come to their senses and realize that they're shutting down the government," Gohmert added. "I hope it doesn’t get shut down, because it's just stupid. I've got that hope."

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