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As John McCain told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer “We started this on a fool’s errand, convincing so many millions of Americans and our supporters that we could defund Obamacare,” “[That] obviously wouldn’t happen until we had 67 Republican senators to override a presidential veto.” This effort to shut down the government started in mid- summer by 80 House Republicans, including our own Rep. Blake Farenthold, signed a letter to John Boehner stating their wishes to block funding for the federal health care law – even if it would mean causing a government shutdown. You can read the article and see a copy of that letter here

After the 2011 fiscal cliff crisis, President Obama told his staff that he would never again negotiate the full faith and credit of the United States. The GOP thought he was bluffing, but obviously, he was not. I agree, why do we have a debt ceiling in the first place? Denmark is the only other country to have one. The president and both chambers of the legislative branch are required to submit a budget (or a continuing resolution) so after all is said and done we should pay our obligations. Senate Minority leader, Mitch McConnell has a good plan we should adopt. McConnell’s plan would authorize the president to raise the debt limit and if Congress objected, they could offer an amendment to override the president’s decision.

The government shutdown cost us $24 billion in lost revenue, 120,000 jobs, unnecessary hardships and 0.25 percentage point from fourth-quarter economic growth, according to the president’s economic advisers.

What did the Republican Party gain besides record low approval numbers? An analogy was made that the party was like a dog chasing a car. First, if Obamacare could have actually been defunded, what would become of the people who acquired healthcare through the Medicaid expansion and all those who acquired the insurance using the Obamacare exceptions that were not there before? Their actions made the Affordable Care Act more popular despite the website’s disastrous rollout. You can’t make a case for repeal if you don’t have a plan for the consequences.

I still don’t understand why it was so important for President Obama to negotiate each deal with the opposition party. The Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid did an excellent job in negotiating for the Democratic Party. As it turned out, not one Democrat voted to default on our debt or to keep the government closed. It didn’t really surprise me that not one Texas Republican legislator from either house voted to raise the debt limit and reopen the government. The “repeal Obamacare” cheerleader, Senator Ted Cruz was hailed as a hero in our great state, so was a lesson learned?