By Joe King, [email protected]

Nationally, republicans haven’t had an easy time trying to stop the implementation of Obamacare, but locally Congressmen Phil Roe and John Duncan have been putting in the work to stop the new heath care law.

Both Roe and Duncan were among the 230 votes in the House of Representatives who voted in favor of defunding Obamacare as a way to prevent the looming government shutdown scenario. 189 members of the House voted in opposition of the proposal.

“We must use every tool we have to defund, dismantle, repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act,” Roe said. “It is important that we continue to enable a debate on getting rid of this deeply flawed law. As more and more people learn what’s in the law and public support continues to erode, we will begin to see more and more supporters of this law look to stop the damage it is causing our health care system.”

Duncan was also strongly in favor of stripping the funding for Obamacare.

“I voted for the continuing resolution primarily because the people of East Tennessee are overwhelmingly opposed to Obamacare,” Duncan said. “The bill not only defunds Obamacare, but it also provides funding to keep the government running through December 15th at current levels and ensures our Nation does not go into default by allowing interest and principal payments toward the national debt to continue.”

Even though the version approved in the House prevents a government shutdown, supporters of the health care act have accused republicans of taking the federal government “hostage” on this issue. However, the decision as to whether or not the shutdown occurs rests heavily on the democrat controlled Senate.

“As long as the Senate does its job, the government won’t shut down,” Roe explained. “A government shutdown would be detrimental to the economy and the people of the First District didn’t send me to Washington to shut the government down; they elected me to run it, and hopefully make it smaller and cut spending”.

Similarly, Duncan blamed the risk of the shutdown on the inaction of the Senate.

“The House has voted for a plan to fully fund the government with the exception of Obamacare,” Duncan added. “The Senate has not acted at all, and the only one not compromising at the moment is the President.  He is not some sort of entity that is above compromise. The House is back in session Wednesday and will be working through the weekend and into next week if need be to find a solution.”

And while the passage of the legislation can be noted as a victory for those opposed to the health care law, with the inaction of the Senate and the threat of President Obama vetoing the defunding option, there is a long road ahead for republicans such as Roe and Duncan who want to see an end to Obamacare.

“We do have other option,” Roe encouraged.” I think we’ll look into delaying the full law for a year.”

CUTLINE 1: U.S. Congressman Phil Roe. (The Herald/ Archived Photo)

CUTLINE 2: U.S. Congressman John Duncan. (The Herald/ Archived Photo)

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