To the Editor:
Sen. Johanns opposes the Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as Obamacare. He has voted, supported and led the fight against this law and will continue to do so in the future.
If legislation known as a continuing resolution (CR) comes before the Senate in a few weeks to fund the government within the limits set by current law while also defunding Obamacare, Sen. Johanns would fully support that effort and it is likely all 45 Senate Republicans will as well. But, while it might only take 41 votes to stop something, it takes at least a majority to pass something and Republicans do not have the majority. Therefore, because Democrats in the majority support Obamacare, that piece of legislation will never pass the Senate. Those who see a Republican CR ending up on the President’s desk either don’t understand Senate procedure or choose to ignore it.
The truth is, as long as Democrats control the Senate and the White House, a take-it-or-leave-it face-off would most likely lead to a government shutdown. Even a shutdown wouldn’t stop implementation of the flawed health care law, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service. Many provisions like the individual mandate, the exchanges, the subsidies and the Medicaid expansion would all continue. Also, the Administration may use more than a billion dollars in existing funding to implement the law during a shutdown.
So, while Obamacare would still go forward, many services Nebraskans depend on would be stopped. Certain veterans’ benefits would stop. Paychecks would no longer reach our troops. Construction on STRATCOM’s new headquarters could be delayed and the smooth operation of Social Security and Medicare would be in doubt.
Sen. Johanns believes we should take every practical step to stop Obamacare, but doing so through the CR while Democrats control the Senate and President Obama is still in office would only result in a government shutdown, which would still fail to stop Obamacare – this tactic fails to accomplish its goal, and has real consequences for our troops, veterans and Nebraska farmers.
U.S. Senator Mike Johanns