ATLANTA -- With the government shutdown moving into its fifth day, we reached out to members of the Georgia Congressional Delegation to see what they would like to see done to end the stalemate, and whether they would be willing to vote in favor of a funding bill that does not include any changes to the Affordable Care Act.
Republicans Lynn Westmoreland, Rob Woodall, and Austin Scott did not respond to our emails, nor did Democrats John Lewis, Sanford Bishop, and John Barrow.
The picture from the rest, however, paints a clear picture that the gridlock will continue.
Tom Price- 6th District (Republican):
Since the lapse in appropriations began, Republicans have voted every single day to reauthorize funding for critical institutions of the federal government. Instead of building upon those areas where we agree, Senate Democrats are stonewalling the legislative process by refusing to even debate the bills we pass and sit idly by as Americans continue to suffer.
Today, we learned that the White House is pleased that the government has shut down and is happy to see this continue, so long as it is politically detrimental to Republicans and thus, beneficial for them. This is utterly shameful. The American people deserve better than a ruling party unwilling to work on a bipartisan basis to address the growing concerns of the American people about a health care law that is too costly, too intrusive and too detrimental to the future of our great nation.
Tom Graves- 14th District (Republican):
Congressman Graves is working to pass a fair funding bill that opens the entire government and protects his constituents from the harmful effects of Obamacare.
Jack Kingston- 1st District (Republican):
Congressman Kingston remains committed to ending the government shutdown and protecting the American people from the disastrous effects of the controversial health care law known as Obamacare.
Over the past week, the House has passed two bills sponsored by Mr. Kingston to fund targeted portions of the government.
First, the Pay Our Military Act ensures troops do not experience any disruption in pay during any shutdown. That bill was unanimously approved by the House on Saturday, the Senate on Monday, and signed into law just before the lapse in appropriations began Tuesday morning.
Second, the Research for Life Saving Cures Act provides for immediate funding for the National Institutes of Health at their current levels. This comes after reports that the NIH may unnecessarily turn away patients from lifesaving cancer treatments as a result of the shutdown. This legislation passed with overwhelming and bipartisan majority. Senator Reid has thus far refused to take it up in the Senate.
With respect to a larger funding measure, the House has passed three compromise packages only to be met with a refusal to negotiate from Senate Democrats and President Obama. We stand ready to work to reach agreement but cannot do so if Washington Democrats continue to refuse to act in good faith to do the people's business.
Congressman Kingston continues to oppose funding for the health care law because it is clearly opposed by the majority of Americans and only compounds the issues facing our health care system. By ignoring the underlying issues and opting instead to impose a $1.7 trillion new government bureaucracy on top of American health care, it serves only to drive up costs and take away choice for American businesses and families.
Phil Gingrey- 11th District (Republican):
The Congressman has pledged not to vote for any CR that provides funds for Obamacare in any way.
Doug Collins- 9th District (Republican):
In terms of the first part of your inquiry, we're not going to speculate on what might or might not come before the House over the next couple of days because we simply don't know. There are indications the House will consider multiple program-specific spending bills, which Congressman Collins will consider in due course. In terms of ending the shutdown, the following may be attributed to Congressman Collins: "The Senate can end the government shutdown today if they'll take up and pass any of the spending measures the House has sent over. At the very least, they can start the process by simply appointing conferees to resolve our differences. The House has been waiting for the Senate to come to the table for 3 days now."
Paul Broun- 10th District (Republican):
As of right now, the only thing that the House will be voting on this weekend is a bill to provide federal workers with retroactive pay. Today's votes are on H.J. Res. 85, the National Emergency Disaster Recovery, and H.J. Res. 75, the Nutrition Assistance for Low-Income Women and Children. None of these bills are related to Obamacare. Dr. Broun would need to see what specific proposal is brought forward before commenting.
David Scott- 13th District (Democrat):
If a clean bill comes up that funds the government as a stop-gap or Continuing Resolution, Congressman Scott will vote yes. He wants to open the government ASAP without preconditions. The Republican Leadership is blocking an up or down vote. The Washington Post has a list of Republicans who also want a clean vote. He will not vote for anything that kills the Affordable Care Act. It has been law since March 2010. Once the government is open, he is open to discussions on: 1. Improvements to the health care law, 2. Long-term debt issues, 3. Other things. But, holding the government shutdown as leverage is not good government. On Oct 17 the debt ceiling needs to be raised and these fights need not spill over to that very serious issue.
Hank Johnson- D- 4th District (democrat):
Congressman Johnson thinks House leadership should bring a clean funding bill to the floor for a vote - i.e. one without any strings attached that would delay or defund the ACA. We know now that at least 20 Republicans are in favor of a clean CR together with a majority of Democrats they could vote to reopen the government right now - but Speaker Boehner has yet to put forth a clean bill.