Letter: It’s called being obstructionists

In a letter in last week’s issue [“It’s called standing on principle,” Aug. 29], James C. Miller III asserts that voting to repeal a piece of legislation 40 times is somehow a principled stand. How many more times will we have this symbolic vote of “principle” that will not pass the Senate and would assuredly be vetoed by the president — another 10, 20 or 30 times?

Should Republicans in the House of Representatives keep voting their principle and forget about doing the rest of the business of governing? Should the Congress not try to pass legislation on immigration reform, voting rights and the creation of jobs? To borrow the words of President Truman, this is one “do-nothing Congress.”

In his letter, Mr. Miller argues that Obamacare, the Affordable Health Care Act, is a “train wreck” about to happen. That is the same sort of rhetoric used against Social Security and the GI Bill. The Affordable Health Care Act is just that: It makes it affordable for everyone to have decent health care.

In the words of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), “this is our last, best chance to kill Obamacare.” However, once the American public sees the benefits of Obamacare — which is already beginning to become evident — this program will become as widely accepted and appreciated as programs like Social Security.

Mr. Miller’s feeling that shutting down the federal government can be advantageous is cavalier. Do we not learn from history? The idea of a shutdown is nothing more than blackmail. Many of us cannot afford to do without our Social Security checks; nor can we afford to lose the assistance offered by Medicare.

Isn’t it bad enough that one of the few pieces of legislation passed by this “do-nothing” House of Representatives cuts the food stamp program, which has had a negative impact of many members of our armed forces and their families? Republicans are now suggesting that we shut down the government so that the troops will not be paid.

Henry R. Gorfein
Washington

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