Politics

George Will, Louie Gohmert spar over GOP anti-Obamacare funding tactics

On Sunday’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” on ABC, Texas Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert and Washington Post columnist George Will debated the merits of the congressional Republicans using the budget process to attack Obamacare.

Gohmert first reacted to President Barack Obama’s suggestion the GOP was unified in trying to prevent people from getting health care in his remarks on Friday.

“That’s a false narrative,” Gohmert said. “He said that we’re trying to keep people from having health care. That’s just not true. That is an absolute blatant lie. We are not trying to keep anybody from getting health care and whether or not they have insurance under an exchange or not does not prevent people from getting health care.”

But Will said although it may be false, this was a battle the Republican can’t win because the president will control the narrative.

“The congressman said that’s a lie,” Will said. “Remember when Mark Twain said the difference between a lie and a cat is a cat only has nine lives? The fact is, the president has the power, particularly when supported as this one is by the mainstream media, to set the narrative.  And the narrative will be that the Republicans have chosen simply to cause chaos. And I think it’s a bad idea. You cannot govern this country from one-half of one of our three branches of government — can’t be done.”

Nonetheless, Gohmert said the House of Representatives has a duty to see that Obama adheres to the Constitution, even when it comes to Obamacare.

“Even though we’re one-half of the legislating body from which no spending occurs unless we agree,” Gohmert said. “That is a position that allows us to force others to adhere to the Constitution. We don’t have to wait for the Supreme Court. We can force that. And we can say, ‘You’re going to abide by the Constitution whether the Supreme Court gets it wrong or right.’ We have the ability to force respect for the law. And some of us think that we ought to force them to do that.”

Watch:

Stephanopoulos pressed Gohmert once again, asking him if he had the votes to defund Obamacare, to which Gohmert said not yet. But he went on to point out what he deemed unfairness of the president’s implementation of the law.

“And as far as Obamacare, when the president himself says it’s not ready so I’m giving this break to all big business, what about the poor guy out there making $14,000? He’s going to pay extra income tax if he cannot afford to pay several thousand dollars for an Obamacare policy. Who’s caring about him? Well, a lot of us do. But it’s not this president, because he didn’t let the individual mandate have a year off. That only goes to big business. That’s not fair.”

Follow Jeff on Twitter