In a stunning reversal, Republican lawmakers have abandoned plans to try to dismantle the Affordable Care Act by defunding it piece by piece, New Jersey Congressman Scott Garrett has revealed.
"Republican leadership in the House does not see that as a strategy," Garrett told "The Steve Malzberg Show," on Newsmax TV.
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"The idea is if you say you're not going to put x number of millions or billions of dollars in this bill or that bill, then what happens?
"The president will say I'm going to veto the bill in which case the funding for all of those programs — or potentially the entire government — runs out. Then you come to the proverbial threat of a shutdown."
Garrett, who serves on the Budget and Financial Services Committees, said fighting the Affordable Care Act — commonly known as Obamacare — would have been more realistic when it was first formulated.
"All the way back to when the president first came in — that would, probably, was our best shot of drawing lines in the sand," he said.
"And as you moved away from that, as far as Obamacare goes, there's been less willingness to even have that discussion, despite a few of us still constantly saying this is an important issue."
On the subject of the George Zimmerman trial, Garrett, who has represented New Jersey’s Fifth Congressional District since 2003, said he is disturbed by the government’s post-verdict tinkering.
Attorney General Eric Holder has indicated he’s troubled by the Zimmerman verdict and pledged to have it looked at by the Department of Justice. And Florida State Attorney Angela Corey referred to Zimmerman as a "murderer" after his acquittal.
"They're not living up to their roles . . . No, once you have been acquitted by a jury and found not guilty, that is not the place . . . for them to step in and say they have a different opinion,” he said.
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