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Ask former President Bill ClintonBill ClintonBill Clinton distributes relief supplies in Puerto Rico In Washington and Hollywood, principle is sad matter of timing Mika Brzezinski: Bill Clinton needs to apologize or stop talking MORE, and Hillary Rodham Clinton, how easy it is to smash Republicans who try to shut the government down. Ask former Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.), who is now reduced to a marginal sideline player, how brilliant he was when he moved to shut the government down during the Clinton years.

ObamaCare is a legitimate issue now and in the 2014 elections. But the obsession of the right over ObamaCare, leading certain pandering Republicans — now including Rubio — to threaten a government shutdown, represents a disastrous failure to understand why Congress (including the GOP House) is so unpopular and why the Republican brand is in so much trouble.

Rubio could have, and should have, made a cogent case to Republicans (as former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole (R-Kan.) recently did) about why the road of pathological obstruction is the road to Republican disaster.

Instead, Rubio followed his statesmanship on immigration by wimping out to the right on healthcare. We have seen this script before. Ask Bill Clinton, America's most popular modern president by far. Ask Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonO’Malley tells Dems not to fear Trump FBI informant gathered years of evidence on Russian push for US nuclear fuel deals, including Uranium One, memos show Pelosi blasts California Republicans for supporting tax bill MORE, America's most likely future president by far. 

Ask Newt Gingrich, you if can remember who he is.