Moderate Republicans Express Anger as Conservatives Block Bill to End Shutdown

Image: Moderate Republicans Express Anger as Conservatives Block Bill to End Shutdown

Wednesday, 16 Oct 2013 09:59 AM

By Melanie Batley

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Moderate Republicans are reeling after tea party lawmakers and conservative lobbying groups Tuesday night rejected a last-ditch proposal by House Speaker John Boehner to end the government shutdown and avert a default on the nation's debt.

"This party is going nuts," Rep. Peter King of New York told The Huffington Post.

"So many people I run into who are normal people — and I hate to use that term — they just can't understand what's going on. On this one they can't even see both sides. They just think Republicans are crazy. That's it. They see no justification for any of this," he said.

Urgent: Should GOP Stick to Its Guns on Obamacare? Vote Here.

The House leadership proposal would have reopened the government through Dec. 15, and extended the nation’s borrowing authority through February 7. It also called for an end on the medical device tax under Obamacare, and would have required members of Congress, the president, vice president, and Cabinet officers to enroll in Obamacare.

But the proposals on Obamacare didn't go far enough for conservative lawmakers, who want to see the law completely defunded or repealed. The final nail in the coffin came when the conservative Heritage Action for America group headed by former South Carolina GOP Sen. Jim DeMint, sent out an email blast urging Republicans to vote no because the House bill “will do nothing to stop Obamacare’s massive new entitlements from taking root,” The Washington Post reported.

Soon after, Boehner cancelled the scheduled vote, realizing he didn't have enough support within the Republican Conference to get the plan passed.

Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington echoed King's comments.

"Nothing positive will be achieved by prolonging this shutdown any longer, or crossing the debt limit threshold," Herrera Beutler said in a statement Tuesday, according to The Huffington Post. "It's time for my colleagues to face reality."

Related stories:

House GOP Conservative-Moderate Rift Boils Over

Obama: Boehner 'Can't Control His Caucus'


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