Obama defends Obamacare, warns GOP against shutdown in weekly address
September 28th, 2013
06:00 AM ET
7 months ago

Obama defends Obamacare, warns GOP against shutdown in weekly address

Washington (CNN) – President Barack Obama in his weekly Saturday address praised his signature health care legislation while lashing out at congressional Republicans who would seek to defund it.

Tuesday is going to be a big day, Obama tells viewers, because “it’s the day a big part of the Affordable Care Act kicks in” - the opening of new exchanges for private health insurance. He praised the accessibility to health insurance that the exchanges will provide.

But the exchanges' debut is not the only thing that happens Tuesday.

“It’s also the day that a group of far-right Republicans in Congress might choose to shut down the government and potentially damage the economy just because they don’t like this law,” Obama said.

Congress has a little over two-and-a-half days for both chambers to pass identical funding bills for the federal government.

The Senate passed a funding bill Friday and sent it back to the House. That version stripped House language that would have defunded Obamacare; it remains unclear what the House will do with the bill.

“Republicans in the House have been more concerned with appeasing an extreme faction of their party than working to pass a budget that creates new jobs or strengthens the middle class,” Obama warned.

“And in the next couple days, these Republicans will have to decide whether to join the Senate and keep the government open, or create a crisis that will hurt people for the sole purpose of advancing their ideological agenda,” he said.

The funding bill isn't the only issue at hand, Obama said. He warned against any attempt by Republicans to attach items of their agenda onto a bill authorizing the Treasury Department to increase the debt limit. Obama vowed once again not to negotiate over the debt limit - saying raising it to ensure the country can pay its bills is Congress' Constitutional responsibility - although he said he would negotiate over “our economic future.”

“I don’t know how to be more clear about this: No one gets to threaten the full faith and credit of the United States of America just to extract ideological concessions,” he said.


Filed under: Health care • President Obama
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. chris villarreal

    You mean the same republican party that effectively shutdown the government in 1929 cashing in billions from future holdings? im shocked.

    September 28, 2013 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  2. justanaverageguy

    I dont know exactly how it will happen- whether it's with the debt ceiling or replacing the sequester, this president will try his best to, with cover, make cuts to Social Security.

    This is what Obama has always been about.
    Cutting Social Security and Medicare.

    If we the people allow this to happen, we will deserve what we get.

    On October 3rd, several dozen members of Congress will join hands with members of the public to form a human chain against Obama's Chained CPI fraud. We should be there by the thousands in support.

    If we the people are not willing to put up a major fight, Obama will strike the first blow against Social Security. Once that is accomplished, more cuts will follow leading to eventual privatization.

    Every American should know that these attacks, led by the president, many in Congress and a few billionaires- are happening even while Social Security has a $2.8 trillion surplus. If cuts including Chained CPI are signed into law, the president will be guilty of massive fraud, embezzlement and breach of fiduciary reponsibility- against the American people.

    September 28, 2013 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  3. carrotroot

    @izz we had a presidential election in 2012 and the cadidate who ran on repealing Obamacare LOST the election. People voted on this issue already. The republicans need to get over it.

    September 28, 2013 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  4. bobo

    Why is Obama willing to negotiate with Iran & Syria but not Republicans???? So we now negotiate with Terrorists and Terror States but Not our own people???

    September 28, 2013 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  5. Zan

    If corporations need a year's delay to figure out how to implement Obamacare, why do actual voters have to figure it out in the next three months? Are voters now lab rats for corporations and politicians looking to judge the viability of untested new laws? In any case, the Republicans had since they were voted iinto congress in 2010 to try to at least get rid of the individual mandate but they did nothing. All I see here is a brazen attempt to get more tax cuts and favors for the wealthy by threatening Obama's and the Democrat's gift to the healthcare industry through a game of chicken.

    September 28, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  6. Marty, FL

    @bobo,

    Pres. Obama has negotiated with Republicans several times, even passing an original GOP healthcare plan, yet you somehow fail to notice?...or willfully choose to ignore it is more like it. C'mon.

    September 28, 2013 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    Obama has to go

    September 28, 2013 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  8. Dar

    Dear Mr. President,
    There is an old saying that rings true here. "If It Sounds To Good To Be True, It Probably Is"

    September 29, 2013 05:57 am at 5:57 am |
  9. vet in tx

    The most hilarious part of all of this is that whoever voted for Romney, actually voted for Obamacare and gun control, actually voted for cap and trade. How is that you say?

    "From you Newt, we got it from you and the Heritage Foundation" – Mitt Romney during the republican primary debates.

    Irony at it's finest and a good insight into how easy it is to convince conservatives, especially the posters "bobo" and "anonymous".

    Everything you allow the gold salesman to get you riled up about, the previous administration and the previous republican administrations created or implemented.

    Obama phones – Reagan (changed to cell phones under W and not altered by Obama)
    Obamacare – republican senate and heritage foundation
    cap and trade – GW Bush
    Amnesty – Reagan
    Tax increases – Reagan, GW

    I could go on and on, but I will let other posters add to the previous republican ideas that Obama is smart enough to set up republicans with.

    September 29, 2013 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  10. Larry in Houston

    We are the ONLY industrialized nation in the world that has no national health care plan.
    pitiful, isn't it ?
    I guess this country would rather send Billions to other un-developed countries, than to help our own. pathetic, isn't it ?
    No Wonder more & more people are getting their RX's + other meds & pills On-Line, thru Canada, & Mexico. I guess this trend has been going on for a while now. It will most likely get worse, meaning more & more people all across this country will be doing the same. Don't blame them.

    September 29, 2013 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  11. S. B. Stein

    My question is why aren't the GOP doing this now? There are other ways to get things done that don't risk screwing the economy. If all would get together and be flexible, it might help things. If all rules were pushed through with cooperation on both sides, then it would help get the economy going. I guess the GOP doesn't understand that.

    September 29, 2013 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
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