House Republicans: Senate is running out the clock
September 29th, 2013
05:02 PM ET
10 months ago

House Republicans: Senate is running out the clock

Washington (CNN) – A group of House conservatives gathered Sunday on the Senate side of Capitol Hill to call their Senate colleagues back to work as the government continues to creep toward a government shutdown.

"This is the old football strategy," Rep. Tim Griffin of Arkansas said at the news conference, holding a football. "When you get to where you want to be in a football game, you run out the clock."

"If they really cared whether this government would shut down or not, they would be here instead of saying they'd be back tomorrow afternoon," he added. "At some late hour, they'll pass something and then they'll say 'Oh my gosh, we've run out of time'."

The Republican-controlled House sent back a short-term spending bill in the wee hours of Sunday morning to the Senate with two anti-Obamacare provisions attached: a one-year delay of the federal health care law and a repeal of the medical device tax.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid warned on Saturday the Senate would reject any provision in the bill that chips away at Obamacare, and the White House issued a veto threat as well. But the House passed the bill anyway, and if Congress doesn't reach an agreement by midnight Monday, the government goes into a shutdown.

Democrats argue Republicans are to blame for using a reckless strategy to slash the president's signature health care law through a bill meant to fund the government. Republicans argue their plan keeps the government afloat, and as for the Obamacare maneuver, they say they're simply listening to their constituents.

Reid did not call the Senate back to work on Sunday, and the chamber is set to reconvene at 2 p.m. ET, 10 hours before the deadline.

Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tennessee, joked at the news conference that the group of representatives could make a country album. Instead of "O Brother, Where Art Thou," she said it would be "O Senate Where Art Thou?"

One by one, the Republicans continued to bash the Senate for not working on Sunday, when the House worked late the night before.

"Unlock those doors, I say to Harry Reid, and come out," said Rep. Ann Wagner of Missouri.

Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas lamented that Senate Democrats and the president keep saying "Obamacare is the law, so just forget about it."

Gohmert added that the debt ceiling is also "the law."

"Unless you want that shoved back in your face, then you need to be flexible," he said.


Filed under: Congress • Health care • House • Louie Gohmert • Marsha Blackburn • Senate
soundoff (123 Responses)
  1. Justin

    Cruz's faux-filibuster was classic clock running.

    September 29, 2013 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  2. Steve

    The GOP isn't negotiating. They are trying to blackmail the President and the country.

    September 29, 2013 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  3. Justjean

    Near President McCain said it best. Elections have consequences. Thre is absolutely no reason for the Senate to undo the implementation of the bill they fought hard to get. Why would they? I for one don't understand why this vote to pay the bills is necessary. Can't we word things so that anything we spend MUST be paid...no vote needed?

    September 30, 2013 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  4. TCar

    This coming from the group that said that they would vote NO on everything President Obama put up for a vote! And you guys called Mr. Kerry a flip-flop!

    September 30, 2013 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  5. Justjean

    Also, can you imagine the waste of those dollars spent on training those who will navigate the provisions of ACA? Are we to tell them...come back in a year? What about the people who are literally dying to sign on Tuesday? Make no mistake, treatment is NOT available for those who have a diagnosis if you are uninsured.

    Yes, there are snafu's: people who may earn a dollar over the max and not get subsidies that may make a difference for them, people who will not get subsidies because their state's governor has refused to expand Medicaid. All those things can be addressed, and quickly, if congress will work on it. IHowever, it is pretty obvious the GOP will do NOTHING to fix the ACA provisions...they will continue to try to repeal it, throwing everything and everybody into total confusion midstream. The only way to fine-tune this thing is to work to defeat extreme Republicans.

    September 30, 2013 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  6. Tom

    Too bad the GOP hates the democratic process so much they're willing to steam roll the nation to prove during a hissy fit.

    September 30, 2013 12:19 am at 12:19 am |
  7. southerninsanity

    I love to see President Obama, former President Clinton and Senate Democrats talk about the Republicans refusing to negotiate. None of them have a concept of the meaning of the word. Negotiate does not mean give in and do whatever the other side wants; compromise doesn't mean that either. When you throw in the clowns making jokes, it speaks volumes.

    September 30, 2013 12:19 am at 12:19 am |
  8. JCFinley1

    The problem with the moderate Republicans is that Boehner wants to remain House Speaker. If he allows the moderate Republicans to join the Democrats in this vote he will no longer be Speaker because the TP will break from the Republican Caucus and the Republicans will no longer have a unified majority. The TP has already threatened to pull support from him for House leadership on this. The Koch brothers and the right wing of the Republicans are beyond reason. Go talk to Lynne Cheney.

    September 30, 2013 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  9. Sadie

    Kudos Republicans!! At least you have the honor to negotiate. The Democrats follow Obama blindly and will do anything he wants and tells them to do. Why raise the debt ceiling??? So he can take his family on more expensive vacations!!!! That's the ONLY thing this prez does besides look for chaos in the world to draw attention away from his own America problems and chaos that he has created. He's even turned the Clintons into scapegoats for everything. I wouldn't support Hillary for anything. Once they took up with Obama, they became him. Now, back to the matter at hand. NO raising the debt ceiling, if our credit rating takes another hit because of Obama, .....oh well...oh well. Our reputation is already stinky because of him around the world. We have become the ugly Americans. Oh where, oh where is Mitt Romney when we so desperately need him?????? That's right, he's laughing his arse off right now – and well he should be. I'm thrilled, Mr. Romney, that you have a front row seat for this and yet you don't have to clean up this ridiculous man's mess.

    September 30, 2013 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  10. R. G.

    OK lets think this through. The President is elected for 4 years by the electoral college. Only 1/3 of the Senate is up for election every 6 years for the states. The House of Reps are elected every 2 years and represent the actual population. So, in theory the House actually does represent the people where the other branches don't. mmm. That would mean, that the House has a greater probability that the representatives are listening to the public. So, most likely, the House is voting for their constituents. It just happens that their constituents must really not want ACA, otherwise the House would vote otherwise. Further, its more likely that the Senate and the President aren't listening to the people, because they don't need to. Huh. Interesting.

    September 30, 2013 12:39 am at 12:39 am |
  11. nomad2003

    as clinton said.. Barack Obama's refuses to negotiate ... the Repubs have agreed to let everything continue except to delay "a trrain wreck" the dems called it, for one year to fix it...
    so it seems the dems and obama refuse ot negotiate, not the repubs

    September 30, 2013 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  12. Skip Glanz

    Apparently this group of House members does not realize they are the one's running out the clock. They look stupid calling out the Senat4 on this issue. The Senate, did their part by working to get the job done for the American people. While the Senate has not really earned 10% of their salary, they have accomplished more than the totally worthless House. It is time to remember their oath to the American people, when they took office. Instead these mousie House members forget about the American people and bow to the pressure of a minority of their party, that required them to take an oath that goes against the oath to the people. My way or the highway never works in a democracy. Please get your act together or hopefully the American people will send you to the unemployment line, where your stances have sent many of them.

    September 30, 2013 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  13. longfisch

    I see the "Clean Bill" slogan is being repeated ad nauseum. If you believe a representative should vote as their constituents ask them to, why does anyone have a problem with what is happening? The Democrats want their officials to not budge on this issue, so they don't and should be applauded for it. The GOP wants their officials not to budge on this issue also, they haven't and should also be applauded for it. Until the constituents tell their representatives to change strategies we are getting exactly what we are asking for.

    September 30, 2013 01:05 am at 1:05 am |
  14. Bob

    Republican demands in a nutshell:

    "Give us our way or we'll blow up the economy!"

    September 30, 2013 01:22 am at 1:22 am |
  15. DJ

    janskor the military would be affected by a shutdown as we are essential workers.

    September 30, 2013 01:24 am at 1:24 am |
  16. RRJ

    The GOP is still fighting a fight they lost three years ago... don't they get tired of being wrong and on the loosing side?
    Those dozed billionaires who own the GOP and the tea party hate groups must be turning up the heat.

    Hang tough Harry Reid and don't budge an inch. Let the GOP shut down the government and shoot themselves in the foot in the process.

    September 30, 2013 01:34 am at 1:34 am |
  17. Terry

    More like 75% of the public will blame the republicans for this mess. Mainly because it is so obvious. Good things can come out of bad things though. With any luck the GOP will lose the house and the democrats will retain the senate because of their endless banally inane actions and words. Wouldn't it be nice to actually have a government that actually work? Used to like having two parties having to compromise and get good stuff passed. Won't ever get that again until the GOP goes down in flames. They have done a very good job of lighting that match.

    September 30, 2013 01:37 am at 1:37 am |
  18. LeiLani

    The Republicans, especially the conservatives, are trying their hardest to destroy the country. Obama needs to refuse to give them one iota of what the want; they have not earned the right to compromise because the have comsistently refused to compromise since he was first elected in 2008. They are anti Americans who hate the middle class, working class, immigrants, Hispanics, African-Americans, women, children, gays , Democrats, liberals, and anyone earning less than about $200,000 a year, in short, about 80 to 85% of the country. They need to be voted out of office in 2014 and 2016 and not given a chance to sponsor any meaningful legislation for at least the next 40 years.

    September 30, 2013 01:45 am at 1:45 am |
  19. jeannie

    Rather than work on pressing issues the Republicans hurridly left for their 5 week vacation. Now they are complaining that they are the ones holding the ball because the Democrats didn't show up. They can dish it out but they can't take it. What a joke. These nuts are the reason why I left the party last week. Resorting to extortion to make your point and threatening to destroy our country and a lot of innocent people if you don't get your way is not the kind of leadership I can support or respect.

    September 30, 2013 03:12 am at 3:12 am |
  20. Running out the clock

    Senate ran out the clock al'rite. 21 hours of filibuster that is not a filibuster by 1 senator.

    September 30, 2013 05:53 am at 5:53 am |
  21. GOP = Greed Over People

    What is up with the new GOP echo chamber chant of "taking the weekend off"?

    Let me think, what Senator spent 21 hours reading "Green Eggs and Ham" to a vacant Senate and NOW wants the Senate to step up and vote on a bill the House was told was "pointless" at the beginning of the House vote and would never see the light of day in the Senate?

    NOW, I remember, that was Cruz, the Canuck!

    September 30, 2013 06:59 am at 6:59 am |
  22. Ponder This

    The Senate is running out the clock? – Really? Seriously? Don't Republicans wish now that they had the 21 HOURS that Cruz used up for his ridiculous presentation? Gimme a freakng break!

    September 30, 2013 07:21 am at 7:21 am |
  23. quinLee

    This game has been over since 2010. The Republicans LOST. The replay was reviewed in 2012 and the PEOPLE reaffirmed that the Republicans LOST. On June 28, 2012, the United States Supreme Court (Refs) confirmed, "The ruling on the field stands". The Republicans LOST. So now the GOP/TP and a few really delusional fans refuse to leave the stadium, blocking any new games from being played.

    September 30, 2013 07:52 am at 7:52 am |
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