Meet the Press   |  September 22, 2013

Affordable Care Act has 'Americans on edge'

A Meet the Press panel of lawmakers examines the implementation of the Affordable Care Act and the reactions of the American people.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> you're campaigning for this, which i understand. that's your prerogative. you don't really have the support, and what i'm wondering is why focus on this issue to the exclusion of, say, tax reform ? i know you've actually proposed something on that, but as a group, why focus so narrowly on obamacare which your own colleagues are saying publicly and privately is not going to be dismantled? even rand paul, while he supports the funding, says in the end it's not going to be repealed.

>> well, look, that's shifting, too. as recently as a week or two ago, people were saying the house of representatives would not pass something that funded government wealthy funding obamacare. that turned out not to be true. a few weeks ago people were saying it's not possible to fund obamacare through a continuing resolution. now the house of representatives has passed something that does exactly that. they're calling for this.

>> what i can tell you is 50% of independents say they don't want to defund obamacare if it means shutting down the government. that is a poll from carl rove . the 500 people who marched to cure alzheimer's, do you want to tell them their loved ones with alzheimer's will have delayed treatment because of a government shutdown ? it makes no sense. i come from a high quality health care state and we want to see those at the clinic go across the country. we do not want to relitigate the battles of obamacare again. the house and senate passed it, the senate passed it into law, the court upheld it. will there be changes in the future? yes. but the answer is not to defund it.

>> now to get to the debt limit. what we're talking about now is funding the government. if you don't do it by the end of the month, possible shutdown. that's a separate matter from raising the debt limit which you have to do to pay the bills for the appropriations congress has made. the house, i'm told, wants to pass a bill that would delay obamacare by a year and make that a part of an agreement to raise the debt limit. wong wom congresswoman, the president says he's not going to support raising the debt limit.

>> we must pay our bills. we are not a deadbeat nation. this should not be held as a bargaining chip, it should not be held hostage. we've raised the debt limit over 40 times now.

>> do you have the vote to raise it right now?

>> the president has not said he would not do something with regard to the budget. he is not going to negotiate on something that should not have to be negotiated about, and that's raising the debt ceiling. we've got to pay our bills.

>> in the past, and here's the list of all the times that congress has worked with the commander in chief to raise the debt limit and institute some serious budget reforms.

>> but that was held as a bargaining chip.

>> it would delay it for one year. and one of the things we make certain we do is prohibit all the taxes. senator klobuchar's state with all the medical devices , that's a 2.3% tax.

>> it was not held hostage. it was not a bargaining chip. this has nothing to do with raising the debt ceiling.

>> the disagreement continues. one last