Coburn: Government shutdown over ObamaCare would destroy the GOP

Sen. Tom CoburnTom CoburnCoburn: I haven't seen 'self-discipline' from Trump McCain: No third-party foes coming for Trump Tough choice for vulnerable GOP senators: Embrace or reject Trump MORE (R-Okla.) said Friday that a plan spearheaded by Sen. Mike LeeMike LeeNo reason why women shouldn't be drafted Overnight Cybersecurity: Senate narrowly rejects expanding FBI surveillance powers Anxious Washington watches Brexit vote MORE (R-Utah) — and endorsed by at least a dozen Republican senators — to shut down the government to block funds for ObamaCare would cost the GOP control of the House and could destroy the party.

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“The strategy that has been laid out is a good way for Republicans to lose the House,” Coburn said in an interview with The Washington Examiner's Byron York.

“Lee’s answer [to critics] is, ‘Give me a different strategy,’” Coburn said. “Well, there isn’t one, because we lost the [election]. I’m getting phone calls from Oklahoma saying, ‘support Mike Lee,’ and I’m ramming right back — support him in destroying the Republican party?”

Lee says he’s recruited more than a dozen Republican colleagues willing to block a continuing resolution to fund the government beyond Sept. 30 if it includes funding for ObamaCare.

The second- and third-ranking members of Republican leadership, Sens. John CornynJohn CornynSenate to vote on two gun bills Senate Dems rip GOP on immigration ruling Post Orlando, hawks make a power play MORE (Texas) and John ThuneJohn ThuneRepublicans question Trump's trip to Scotland Short-term FAA bill would likely extend into next year, GOP chairman says Civil liberties group mobilizes against surveillance amendment MORE (S.D.), have said they support Lee’s plan, as do influential conservatives and potential presidential candidates Sens. Marco RubioMarco RubioVa. GOP delegate files lawsuit over bound convention votes The Hill's 12:30 Report Rubio Senate challenger drops out MORE (Fla.) and Ted CruzTed CruzVa. GOP delegate files lawsuit over bound convention votes Our most toxic export: American politick 'Never Trump' group ad compares Trump to Reagan MORE (Texas).

However, Sens. John McCainJohn McCainReport: Prominent neoconservative to fundraise for Clinton McConnell quashes Senate effort on guns No reason why women shouldn't be drafted MORE (R-Ari.) and Roy BluntRoy BluntMcConnell quashes Senate effort on guns White House makes last-ditch plea for opioid funding George W. Bush helping vulnerable GOP senators MORE (R-Mo.) spoke out against the plan earlier this week. Sen. Richard BurrRichard BurrGOP senator on ISIS: 'Take the fight to them' GOP senators: Brexit vote a wake-up call The Trail 2016: Berning embers MORE (R-N.C.) called it “the dumbest idea I've ever heard.”

Coburn on Friday told The Washington Examiner he opposes Obamacare. But the GOP scheme did nothing more than create false expectations for the Republican base, because there’s no chance Obama will sign into law a spending bill that defunds his signature healthcare legislation, he said.

“The worst thing is being dishonest with your base about what you can accomplish, ginning everybody up and then creating disappointment,” he said. “It’s a terribly dangerous and not successful strategy.”

“You’re going to set an expectation among the conservatives in our party that we can achieve something that we’re not able to achieve,” he added. “It’s not an achievable strategy. It’s creating the false impression that you can do something when you can’t. And it’s dishonest.”


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