Heritage Foundation President Jim DeMint tells Newsmax TV in an exclusive interview that "Obamacare should be stopped."
"The stakes are high enough here that this is worth every American standing up and fighting for," DeMint, the former South Carolina senator, tells Newsmax. "America should not have Obamacare. Our government should not be running the healthcare system here in our country — and we know they can't do it.
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"We know it's going to cost a lot more than they promised — and, unfortunately, it's going to lead to a lot of people losing their jobs."
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DeMint, who left Congress at the end of last year, took over the influential conservative think tank in April. The foundation has long opposed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
The Senate is debating this week whether to fund Obamacare as part of a continuing resolution to temporarily finance the federal government starting on Oct. 1 through mid-December. The House of Representatives voted 230-189 last week to defund the healthcare law in approving the resolution that would keep the government operating.
But Majority Leader Harry Reid has said that the upper chamber would back the resolution but not strip funds for Obamacare. President Barack Obama, meanwhile, has said that he would not sign any legislation that would not provide funding for the healthcare law.
On Tuesday afternoon, Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas began filibustering the continuing resolution over the defunding of Obamacare. He began his turn on the Senate floor by saying that he would speak against the law until he was "no longer able to stand."
Cruz's effort has been helped by Sen. Mike Lee of Utah, who has posed several questions to his Senate colleague that highlighted the disadvantages of Obamacare.
"It's good to have heroes, folks who are really standing up, like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee," DeMint tells Newsmax. "That makes me proud to be an American, and there are heroes all over the country right now."
He added that GOP senators could achieve similar status by not backing the healthcare law.
"There are enough senators who promised to do everything they could to stop Obamacare, so we're all watching to see if they actually follow through on their promises," DeMint says. "All it takes is 41 votes to stop Harry Reid from increasing spending and also adding the spending for Obamacare, which doesn't make any sense since the president has delayed large parts of the implementation.
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"He's given waivers to Congress and some of the other groups that are his friends," he adds. "The more the American people know how much this is going to change their lives and hurt their healthcare, endanger our economy and our culture — we're just hoping that Americans are informed enough to inform their representatives."
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