The federal government is “shut down” today.
I use the words “shut down” somewhat loosely, because most Americans won’t be able to tell the government is closed unless they try to get into some place like Yosemite National Park or tour a NASA facility. Only the “non-essential” government personnel are absent today, and it seems the federal government considers most of its employees pretty essential.
Heritage Foundation wrote this morning that the media buzz over the government shutdown has approached “Y2K proportions.” How you see the shutdown, however, largely depends on one thing: How you see Obamacare.
If you like Obamacare, the government shutdown is the Republicans’ fault. They insisted on defunding Obamacare. They would rather shut the government down than fund Obamacare.
If you do not like Obamacare, the government shutdown is the Democrats’ fault. They refused to defund Obamacare even though an increasing majority of the American people do not like the law. They would rather shut the government down than defund Obamacare.
Here’s the bottom line: Healthcare needs reforming. We met with Senator Pryor back in 2009 to discuss steps we believed the U.S. Senate could take to improve healthcare in America. But Obamacare is a terrible law. It’s going to force Americans to pay for abortions, abortion-inducing drugs, sterilization, and contraception regardless of any religious objections they may have to the contrary; a lot of experts also believe it’s going to cause healthcare costs to skyrocket.
Someone said the Republicans have been holding the federal government hostage until they get Obamacare defunded. That’s not 100% true. Both parties have been holding the federal government hostage until they get what they want. If we want an actual solution, the best route would be to give states more flexibility to make healthcare reforms without a lot of central-planning out of Washington.
Of course, that would require the U.S. House and Senate to work together on something, and today the two chambers don’t exactly seem to be on speaking terms.