WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — The Republican-controlled House of Representatives have passed a bill that would defund President Barack Obama’s health care law and which funds the federal government through Dec. 15.
The House voted 230-189 in favor to defund “Obamacare” in order to avert a government shutdown. This sets up a confrontation with the Democratic-led Senate that promises to strip the “defund Obamacare” provision from the bill next week.
The White House has stated that Obama would veto the measure in case it reached his desk.
“They actually did it: The House just passed a resolution that risks a government shutdown to defund Obamacare. (hashtag) EnoughAlready,” the president’s Twitter account, run by Organizing for Action, posted.
House Speaker John Boehner called the vote a “victory for common sense.”
“This is hurting our constituents, it’s hurting the American people,” Boehner said.
Before the vote, Nancy Pelosi called the House “a mess.”
“I come to the floor, in many ways, as a mother,” the House minority leader stated. “This place is a mess. Let’s get our House in order.”
There’s even less certainty now about how Obama and Congress will resolve a feud over raising the nation’s borrowing limit to head off a first-ever default on the nation’s debt.
So Obama, his patience tried and his leverage maxed out, headed west for a day to a sprawling auto plant in Missouri. The nearly 1,000 jobs Ford Motor Co. has added there to build the popular F-150 pickup truck underpins his case that with the government’s help, the economy is bouncing back in American locales far removed from the political congestion in Washington.
Ironically, Ford is the only major U.S. automaker that didn’t partake in the 2009 bailout that Obama says saved the industry and buoyed the economy.
Six years and six months ago, President George W. Bush also escaped to this Ford plant, regrouping amid a storm over the firing of U.S. prosecutors and brinkmanship with Congress over whether troops should stay in Iraq. Walking the noisy assembly lines and chatting up workers, Bush touted gas-electric hybrid vehicles the plant was churning out as he plugged an energy plan that remained controversial in Congress.
“The American people expect us to work together. See, that’s what they want,” Bush said, urging Democrats and Republicans to cooperate.
Obama, whose administration on Friday was also unveiling tough new pollution limits on power plants, won’t see those hybrids on the assembly line. These days, production of that line of SUVs has been moved to Kentucky.
Dan Jowiski, the plant’s manager, said there were once 4,500 workers building autos at the site, but that figure dropped off by nearly two-thirds during the auto industry crisis at the end of the last decade. The plant expects to return to that figure by the start of 2014, when it adds 1,000 workers to the payroll to build the new Ford Transit line of vans.
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