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WEEK 2: Pressure Mounts For Bill Cassidy To End Government Shutdown, Back Clean Funding Bill To Re-open Government

House Majority Including 23 Republicans Would Vote For “Clean Continuing Resolution,” But Cassidy Still Supports Indefinite Shutdown

Cassidy Helped Shut Down Government In Order To Delay Same Health Care Reforms He Tried To Pass At State Level in ’07

New Orleans, Louisiana – As Bill Cassidy’s government shutdown enters its second week, and continues to hurt more and more Louisiana families, pressure is mounting on Cassidy to set aside his personal political interests, end his “reckless revolutionary tactics” and back a clean funding bill that would get the government back up and running right away.

Cassidy helped shut down the government in order to delay the same health care reforms he tried to pass at the state level in 2007, a shameful political calculation and blatant act of hypocrisy that has not gone unnoticed.

  • The Advocate columnist Stephanie Grace writes: “I’m trying to understand the sense of urgency Vitter, and now Cassidy, are exuding over the matter, to the point where they’re willing to shut the government down over it. Trying to understand how it’s more pressing than keeping federal workers on the job; making sure Head Start programs are open to provide care, education and often the only nutritious food children get; allowing cancer patients to enroll in clinical trials at the National Institutes of Health; and keeping the country’s monuments, museums and national parks open.”
  • Times-Picayune columnist Robert Mann writes, “Indeed, Cassidy is a perfect example of the GOP’s derangement on health care. In 2007, he wrote legislation to design ‘the Louisiana Health Insurance Exchange,’ virtually the same program Obamacare has now created and which took effect on Oct. 1.”
  • The Advocate‘s editorial board too has denounced Bill Cassidy’s government shutdown, writing that, “the shutdown demonstrates a lack of good judgment on the House side. We deplore the bad votes of Louisiana’s Republican members of the House, who felt that throwing another tantrum over ‘Obamacare’ was a prudent thing to do at this sensitive economic juncture.”

While 23 GOP Congressman now say they would support a clean funding bill that re-opens the government and ends Bill Cassidy’s government shutdown, Cassidy is doubling down. Last week he blocked a vote to get the government back up and running again, and he still supports an indefinite government shutdown that appears to have no end in sight.

As his government shutdown continues to burden Louisiana families, will Bill Cassidy finally take responsibility and back the only piece of legislation that would end his government shutdown today? Or will he continue to put his personal political interests first, and embrace an indefinite government shutdown that threatens our economy and hurts workers, small-business owners, homeowners, students, seniors and veterans?

“Bill Cassidy’s decision to shut down the government in order to block implementing the same health care reforms he tried to pass at the state level only six years ago was a shameful political calculation that is hurting more Louisiana families by the day,” said Campaign for Louisiana Communications Director Andrew Zucker. “Now Bill Cassidy is refusing to support the only piece of legislation that would end his government shutdown today. As Bill Cassidy continues to support an indefinite government shutdown that hurts Louisiana and threatens the stability of our economy, it’s become increasingly clear that his only concern is protecting his personal political interests – not looking out for Louisiana families.”

BACKGROUND

2007: Cassidy Proposed Louisiana “Create a Statewide Health Insurance Exchange” During State Senate Campaign. During his campaign for the State Senate, Cassidy proposed that Louisiana “create a statewide Health Insurance Exchange to lower insurance premiums, decrease administrative costs and allow flexibility in which benefits workers choose.” [Cassidy for State Senate, Website Archive, 2007]

10/2/13: Bill Cassidy Blocked The House From Voting To Fund The Government. [HJ Res 70, Vote #512, 10/2/13]

Five Times, Cassidy Voted For Plans That Would Shutdown Government. [HJ Res 59, Vote #478, 9/20/13; CNN, 9/20/13; CNN, 9/29/13; Vote #498, 9/29/13; Vote 502, 9/30/13; Vote 504, 9/30/13; Vote 505, 10/1/13]

Cassidy Signed A Letter Asking GOP House Leadership Not To Support Any Spending Bill Unless The Affordable Care Act Is Defunded. “U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy joined more than one-third of U.S. House Republicans in urging the leadership to threaten to force a government shutdown unless Obamacare is defunded… The letter that Cassidy signed onto includes 80 of the House’s 233 Republicans and asks the GOP House leadership not to support any spending bill — including a needed continuing resolution to avoid a partial government shutdown after Sept. 30 — unless the Affordable Care Act health care law is defunded.” [The Advocate, 8/25/13]

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