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Republicans shut down government as if they’d won, not lost the last two elections

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Republicans shut down government as if they’d won - not lost - last two elections
Senator Ted Cruz

Your vote is no longer a consideration for today's Republican Party. How else to explain the GOP's delusional decision to “reflect the will of the American people” this week by flouting the will of the American people and shutting down the government?

Governing as though they won the last two elections isn't a particularly intelligent ploy for the Republicans, but the hard right ideologues now driving the whole show have decided that they – and not the American voters – know what's best for the country. Elections be damned.

By their actions this week the GOP have demonstrated they no longer concern themselves with little details like who actually won the 2008 and 2012 elections, or the health care ideas on which they were fought.

Even though poll after poll has revealed that Americans don't want the Affordable Care Act repealed, especially if it means shutting down the government, the GOP have decided they know best and need not listen to us.

But when you make executive, far-reaching decisions on behalf of people you refuse to consult it isn't politics, it's entitlement. It reveals that you think little things like elections are of no ultimate consequence.

The GOP lost, twice, but they are governing as though they won. It would be laughable if it wasn't so damaging.

Having failed to kill the Affordable Care Act in the courts, the GOP are trying to drown it in the bathtub of endless filibusters in the Senate and through a rule that says only legislation approved by a majority of Republicans can be passed in the House.

This gives the GOP, the minority party, the ability to behave as though they represent the majority. In fact, they don't.

All it really does is make them look like the arrogant kid who takes his marbles home because he didn't get his way.

A few Republicans get it. Last week Senator John McCain remarked that although he realizes that Republicans don't want to hear it, especially when it comes to health care, “elections have consequences.”

Mitt Romney also chimed in, suggesting that instead of gunning for a government shutdown, the other option for eliminating Obamacare “would be potentially working hard to get Republicans elected.”

Talk about old fashioned. Senator Ted Cruz, a child of the Reagan era, has a more exciting strategy, which seems to be to work as hard as possible to make sure Republicans don’t get elected.

Responding to this new hara-kiri brand of politics, Congressman Devin Nunes criticized his fellow House Republicans on Monday, claiming it was moronic for them to let the government shut down over their opposition to Obamacare and memorably calling them “lemmings with suicide vests.”

A Quinnipiac University poll released this week found that fully 72 percent of American voters oppose Congress “shutting down the federal government to block implementation of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare,” while only 22 percent support it. The poll also found that voters, by a 64 percent to 27 percent margin, oppose “blocking an increase in the nation’s debt ceiling as a way to stop Obamacare.”

I can't read tealeaves but those numbers don't lie. This is clear proof that the Republicans hardline approach has failed to resonate with the American people.

Last minute attempts to pin the blame on Senator Harry Reid failed. House Speaker John Boehner is already on record admitting that the GOP resistance to the Affordable Care Act is pointless and almost certain to backfire.

That left a weary looking Republican Congressman Peter King to try and inject a little political reality into the stalemate on Monday.  But the Cruz wing of the party, the one that is holding the gun to its own head as well as America's, is in full control of the party and in no mood to compromise with Democrats, the American people or with reality.

Let's review. Today, the day I write this, is October 1, 2013. The Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare is here.

From today on 48 million people who lack health insurance will be able to receive it and millions more will be able to buy coverage on their own. The Affordable Care Act guarantees that every American will have access to coverage, whether they're sick, healthy, young or old. It will transform the nation's health insurance market for people who don't already get benefits at work.

So let's see for ourselves what the prices are, let's see for ourselves what the choices are, and let's make our own decisions rather than allow the GOP to make them for us.

The damage they are willing to do the nation, our system of government and our international standing makes them the last people we should turn to for good advice.

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