September 20th, 2013
09:59 AM ET
7 months ago

Gingrich favors House Republican budget push on Obamacare

Washington (CNN) - Newt Gingrich, the man in the House speaker's seat during the last government shutdown more than 17 years ago, urged House Republicans Friday to push forward with their plan to pass a bill that keeps funding the government - but only as long as it defunds Obamacare.

His pitch comes despite calls from some Republicans, including Sen. John McCain and Rep. Peter King, who say taking such an approach could be damaging to the party and the country.

But Gingrich argued it paid off for the Republicans last time around and will work for the GOP again if they stand their ground.

"It did work for us. First of all, it worked for the country," the former House speaker said on CNN's "New Day." He then ticked off a series of legislative accomplishments - welfare reform, balanced budgets, and tax cuts - that the Republican-controlled Congress worked with then-President Bill Clinton to pass after the shutdown.

He also pointed to the fact that Republicans kept the House majority in the next midterm election in 1996.

"I think if we had rolled over, if we had been afraid to fight, if we had looked like we didn't believe what we said, we wouldn't have gotten any of that stuff," argued Gingrich, co-host of CNN's "Crossfire."

Read: Government shutdown: Again? Seriously?

Chris Cuomo, co-host of "New Day," pushed back, saying those accomplishments largely happened on Clinton's terms because "he wound up leading the agenda" after Republicans "lost political capital" following the shutdown.

But Gingrich continued to argue "none of those things would have happened had we not had the courage to stand and fight."

Washington is marching toward a shutdown at the end of the month if House Republicans and Senate Democrats don't come to terms on a plan to keep the government funded when money runs out at the end of the month.

Read: Congress: will it be a government shutdown or budget compromise?

The Republican-controlled House is expected to pass a bill Friday that keeps the government running past September 30 - the end of the fiscal year - but strips money for the president's signature health care law. It will go to the Democratic-controlled Senate, where Democrats, with the backing of some Republicans, are set to kill the Obamacare amendment.

The bill would then be sent back to the House, which would have to decide whether to pass it and keep the government running or defeat it and possibly see a government shutdown.

CNNMoney: Government shutdown gears in motion

In the recent dust up over the fiscal deadline, House Republicans in favor of the move to defund Obamacare say they're simply trying to rid the country of a law that a majority of Americans don't like. Rather, Republicans argue, it's the Democrats who are threatening to shut down the government.

"If the House Republicans pass a bill that keeps open every part of the government...why is it their fault if the president and Harry Reid in the Senate then say they're not going to accept keeping open the government?" Gingrich asked.

Opinion: Gingrich: Obama's big debt limit deception

Public opinion polls, however, show Republicans would take the blame for a shutdown.

- CNN's Ted Barrett and Tom Cohen contributed to this report.


Filed under: Budget • Congress • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. J.V.Hodgson

    I have had one very fundamental management policy and practice
    When you make a mistake once (fiscal cliff debacle) I take the committers to one side and re-train and educate why not to do it again, Now Gingrich, Cruz et al are going to do the exact same thing again ( except its worse because the Senate has passed a budget and crazy Cruz et al filibustered reconciliation) They have been taken on one side/ to task explained why, like the errant children they are ( by normally strong republican groups and business people) and still they go ahead. As a senior business manager I told staff who would not follow the right way/ policy ( for the (( company read)) country not either side political ideology) do it twice i.e the same mistake and if you do you will be or are gone=fired.
    My opinion I hope the Republican house and pursues exactly what it says it will do and filibusters in Senate.... and hello 2014. Gingrich is in for a big surprise they will lose the house majority.
    Regards,
    Hodgson.

    September 20, 2013 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  2. the hippies were right

    @J'Cincinnati'Redd, Do you really believe only democrats are on food stamps or need government assistance? I live in an area in Texas that is 90% conservative. I pass by low income neighborhoods daily, and I see people (all white). sitting on their porches, walking to the convenience store, and making purchases with "food stamps". There are still Romney signs everywhere, and "come and take it" flags everywhere. Believe me these people hate the black man that's coming to take their guns away! So you might want to look at some "real" statistics before you continue making silly statements. And turning of Fox "spews" would help too! Good luck, and have a good day.

    September 20, 2013 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  3. Data Driven

    @Hector,

    80 years of liberal control? Better check with your conservative pals, because they seem to be under the impression that Republicans were doing a bang-up job running things until quite recently.

    September 20, 2013 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  4. Tampa Tim

    Hector – we are in better shape now than we were during the first great republican depression.

    September 20, 2013 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  5. Sniffit

    "I like the ACA, but "Obamacare" scares me to death."

    Hehe...interesting enough, poll results this week showed that GOPers/Tetrolls actually think that way. They gave much higher approval when asked about the "Affordable Care Act" than when asked about "Obamacare." Apparently, they're so stuck on stupid and so utterly misinformed that a good chunk of them believe those are two different things.

    September 20, 2013 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  6. Rudy NYC

    Mr. Spock would describe thsi as fascinating. The "do we, or don't we" shut down the governement argument with the Republican Party has split it into two distinct groups: the surrender caucus, and the never surrender caucus. What's so fascinating about it is that common sense would tell you that being part of a surrender caucus is weakness when in fact it's actually a good thing because it means you have at least a shread of common sense.

    I cannot wait to see whether or not the House moves forward on their shutdown vote today. You know they will. Repubilcans, most of them, are too proud [arrogant] to back down from anything. Their thought police would arrest them, and toss them out as weak. Damn, it's tough being a Republican.

    September 20, 2013 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  7. Sniffit

    "Why should we be subject to a law that congress and the president and whomever they chose to exempt from it aren't? "

    They're not exempt from it and that is a gross mischaracterization. The ACA requires large employers to provide health insurance for their employees or pay fines. Guess what the federal gov't is. Guess. That's right, the federal gov't is a large employer. The administrative decision allowing the federal gov't to contribute to congressional aides' and other employees' health care costs, just like any other large employer is required to do, is not an exemption whatsoever. Rather, it's a fix to the poison pill Amendment Grassley stuck in the ACA just to give the RWNJs an opportunity to spew the mischaracterization you just parroted. It forces the gov't to follow he same rules and requirements that private employers have to follow, which is only fair and just.

    September 20, 2013 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  8. rs

    Really Republicans? Really? 8 years of Bush's cut taxes and spend- never mind the wars- you wrecked the economy. NOW you're worries about the effects of people buying and having healthcare insurance and claim that after you guys lost jobs to the tune of half a million to 700,000 a month, that the ACA is the "biggest job loser"?

    Umm, I think you guys hold THAT record.

    September 20, 2013 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  9. Wake up People!

    Did Hector say shuck and jive?? Wow. Is this 1940??

    September 20, 2013 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  10. rs

    "House Republicans in favor of the move to defund Obamacare say they're simply trying to rid the country of a law that a majority of Americans don't like."
    __________________________
    I would guess then the gun bans, background checks and licensing laws are coming from the GOP as well then, eh"

    Yeah, thought so.

    September 20, 2013 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  11. ST

    Why republicans always are going after 47%? Have now taken food from them; don't want them to get the Affordable HealthCare they need; no consideration at all of immigrants; turned a blind-eye on gun control; want to shut down the Government and make 47% suffer more as majority of them have nothing they have saved in terms of money. Wasn't the lesson 47% taught Mitt Romney not learned by republicans? 47% haven't gone anywhere. They are observing carefully all these, and when the time will come, they will show to republicans the power they hold.

    September 20, 2013 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  12. Rob

    Sniffit - Love your response! Scary that people actually think they are two different things.

    -----

    I have to ask why can't people accept they lost a cause to repeal it in a nationwide election and with the Supreme Court. No one will deny that they have attempted to repeal it by defunding the program but instead of trying to change it to make it work better, they are losing face and appear like bratty kids trying to get even. At some point just accept the law has passed and when it is fully implemented everyone can see where the faults are. Then work to make the needed adjustments. No program when first started is perfect and ACA surely is not perfect.

    September 20, 2013 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  13. Lynda/Minnesota

    I seriously doubt that the nation as a whole wants to go through yet another health care debate. Moderate Republicans are aware of how damaging this past healthcare debate was for their party as a whole. Yeah, they "took" the House in 2010. That was then, this is now.

    Having taken the House, they've sat on their butts and issued one anti-American after another anti-American vote. The up and coming political ads will be filled with what the GOP hasn't quite understood: its every move is on internet and media video ... obstruction after obstruction after obstruction.

    The GOP is in its own self made hypocrisy. How on earth they think they can get past their own blind leading the blind wandering in the wilderness experiences is beyond comprehension. The GOP has only one option. Drop the Koch Brothers financing or allow the Koch Brothers to continue to buy Congressional votes and thus rule the United States of America.

    The Grand Old Party brought this self destruction onto themselves. And we haven't seen nothing yet. Oh, but we will. It's coming and it isn't going to be pretty.

    September 20, 2013 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  14. Rudy NYC

    Hector Slagg

    Humm,
    Last shutdown was such a sucsess? If so why do we need another one? Why are we even talking about one? After 80 plus years of Liberal's in control, (Read the Big Social, Spending Programs that are now in receivership) why isn't everything fixed by now? So, I have to ask, WHAT HAPPENED?
    -------------------------–
    Okay, let's be patonizing and go with your historical re-write. Everything was great in the 1950s, wasn't it? Back when you were living under "liberal control" it was great, wasn't it?

    So, what happened? Along came Nixon and his corrupt donors, which required the Congress to pass campaign finance laws. Along came Reaganomic, which cut taxes by 50%, exploded the annual deficit by a factor of ten, and tripled the national debt. And then along came Newt Gingrich, who radicalized Washington with divisive rhetoric and fear mongering, as he led of 12 years of Republican control of Congress.

    Finally, we had Republicans in control of everything: the House, the Senate, and the White House. They went on a spending binge, increasing spending by 7-9% annually for every year that Bush held office. They turned a $300 billion surplus into a $1.5 trillion annual deficit, and they crashed the global economy to boot. That's what happened. Any questions.

    September 20, 2013 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  15. Data Driven

    Thanks, Sniffit, for taking the time to debunk the "exempt" nonsense, which is clearly taken from talk-show talking points. We keep debunking; new people everyday come here and say it all over again. Which bloviator is hammering this talking point on radio every day? - Limbaugh?

    September 20, 2013 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  16. The Real Tom Paine

    -Hector Slagg

    Humm,
    Last shutdown was such a sucsess? If so why do we need another one? Why are we even talking about one? After 80 plus years of Liberal's in control, (Read the Big Social, Spending Programs that are now in receivership) why isn't everything fixed by now? So, I have to ask, WHAT HAPPENED? Why are we in worse shape than the 1930's? You can shuck and jive all you want to, and tell yourself lies but conditions today are extermely bad. Happy landings !
    **********************
    Once again, the absolutist argument the righties use: if the programs have not fixed everything, get rid of all of them. Unlike the Right, we don't just simply declare " Mission Accomplished" and go home. Just because we have programs in place to deal with problems does not mean they will ever be totally eliminated, Gunderson. I guess you still labor under the illusion that Liberasl have had unfettered control for 8 decades, when its been quote the opposite. I guess its better to invent a new timeline than it is to deal with the cosnequences of decades of bad decisions by the GOP.

    September 20, 2013 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  17. just saying

    i'm sure the unions will all be supporting the republicans as they now feel obamacare will destroy the middle class and threaten their existence. or will will obama circumvent the law again, violate the constitution and grant special favors to his supporters in order to avoid the obamacare debalce?

    September 20, 2013 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  18. sonny chapman

    There was a Legislative vote on Obamacare, even after Ted Kennedy's seat was occupied by a Repub, the Repubs. lost. The U.S. Supreme Court took a swing at it, the Repubs. lost. The Repubs. picked up seats in Congress in 2010, but they Repubs. still couldn't repeal Obamacare. The Repubs./Romneycare ran against Obamacare in 2012, they lost. Now they're gonna burn down D.C. Why don't they just SECEDE.

    September 20, 2013 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  19. ge

    newt will say what ever the person who wrote the check tells him to say and think

    September 20, 2013 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  20. rs

    There was a Legislative vote on Obamacare, even after Ted Kennedy's seat was occupied by a Repub, the Repubs. lost. The U.S. Supreme Court took a swing at it, the Repubs. lost. The Repubs. picked up seats in Congress in 2010, but they Repubs. still couldn't repeal Obamacare. The Repubs./Romneycare ran against Obamacare in 2012, they lost. Now they're gonna burn down D.C. Why don't they just SECEDE.
    _____________________________
    They seem very enamored of Mr. Putin, perhaps a change in location would do them all a world of good?

    September 20, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  21. PDO

    Newt ... no one cares about what you would do ... you are totally irrelevant.

    September 20, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  22. Thomas

    @just saying,

    Where do you get your information , the Koch brothers' weekly revue ?

    September 20, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
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