Jon Huntsman: GOP Needs to Drop All-or-Nothing Plan on Obamacare

Sunday, 29 Sep 2013 01:47 PM

By Greg Richter

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Republicans should drop their all-or-nothing approach to repealing Obamacare, says former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman.

Appearing on NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sunday, Huntsman predicted that any government shutdown would last only 24 hours because, "Republicans know this is a loser for them."

The former GOP presidential hopeful suggested members of his party in Congress "have to problem-solve every step of the way and find areas that don't work and fix them as we proceed."

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Fellow panelist and host of MSNBC's "Hardball" Chris Matthews compared the GOP approach to a kidnapping, except in reverse.

"It's like in a kidnapping, you grab the baby and ask for the money. In this case, they've grabbed the money and asked for the baby," Matthews said. "Obama's not going to give them his baby."

Obama will not negotiate on delaying implementation of the entire Affordable Care Act for a year, Matthews said, because it is his claim to history.

"This is what he did after 40 or 50 years of Democratic Party claims, we're going to do healthcare. The Clintons tried, almost got it," Matthews said. "Everybody said we're going to do it since Roosevelt. To say, 'I'm going to give it away or delay it?'"

Republican Rep. Raul Labrador of Idaho admitted that Republicans knew defunding would fail when they introduced it, but he argued against Democratic claims that the GOP is doing something unprecedented by trying to undo a duly-passed law with a threat of a government shutdown.

Democrats, he noted, tried to bring back the Fairness Doctrine after President Ronald Reagan did away with it by shutting down the government, and Democrats also spent the entire presidency of George W. Bush trying to repeal his tax cuts.

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