Senate candidate says defunding Obamacare worth risk of governme - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Senate candidate says defunding Obamacare worth risk of government shutdown

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The man who is challenging Sen. Mitch McConnell in the Republican primary says defunding the Affordable Care Act is worth the risk of a government shutdown.

In an interview you'll see only on WDRB, Matt Bevin tells Lawrence Smith that the Senate Minority Leader is not doing enough to stop Obamacare.

McConnell has made his opposition to Obamacare a cornerstone of his re-election campaign. But Bevin says McConnell should do more, even at the risk of a government shutdown.  "The American people don't want it. They literally can't afford it," said Bevin.

Bevin points to polls which show the increasing unpopularity of the Affordable Care Act. He says it's an opportunity McConnell, as Senate Minority Leader, has failed to seize.  "It's a weakness and a lack of leadership that I think is disconcerting."

Bevin says he supports Republicans in the House who are pushing a new spending plan that defunds Obamacare.

But critics say the resulting fight in the Democratic Senate could potentially shut down the government and backfire against Republicans.

Bevin says, so be it.  "If they would like to shut down government, so be it. If they want to pass it and let the President shut down the government, so be it. The GOP being worried about being blamed for something is not a reason for inaction," said Bevin.

The Senate Conservatives Fund is running ads blasting McConnell for not being conservative enough on Obamacare.

McConnell has consistently said the law should be repealed. But he told me last week that, as long as Democrats control the Senate, trying to defund Obamacare is an exercise in futility.

"When you've got a Democratic Senate and a President who thinks this is his signature accomplishment, the ability to achieve that is somewhat in doubt. I'm in favor of that. I'm just predicting, like my colleague Rand Paul said, it's not likely to happen," said McConnell.

"Weak leaders always say things like that," countered Bevin. "People that are afraid to actually lead, to actually be out in front and make the tough call, those people always have the good excuse and a good reason. To assume defeat before one even tries is a sign of weakness that we really don't want."

The McConnell campaign is circulating a new Washington Post Fact Checker article debunking claims that McConnell has done nothing to fight Obamacare. The article says this intramural debate is really a question of tactics.

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