A number of pols stood out this week. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) spoke out once again in defense of the NSA surveillance programs, trying to defuse the latest inaccurate and alarmist news reports. Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) showed a firm hand in dismissing talk of an Obamacare defund effort. But in the search for someone hitting far above his or her weight, the standout has to be a very junior congresswoman who stood up to the bullies of the hard right.
Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-N.C.) is no squishy Republican. She’s a solid conservative (last year she received an 87.5 rating from the American Conservative Union), but she also is willing to speak out against a really bad idea even if it is a pet project of the right. On her campaign reelection Web site (h/t Weekly Standard) she wrote:
Obamacare must be stopped, but we cannot stop it with political games. And, frankly, any threat to shut down the federal government over funding Obamacare in the Continuing Resolution is a political game and a distraction.
We cannot stop Obamacare by defunding it through the Continuing Resolution because there would be very little, if any, funding of Obamacare in a continuing resolution to begin with! A continuing resolution dictates “discretionary” spending and, unfortunately, that does not apply to the Obamacare spending that is already mandated by law.
Should we repeal, replace, defund, dismantle, and do everything we possibly can to stop Obamacare? Of course! But the Continuing Resolution is not the way to do it.
Friends, you know how committed I am to stopping this disastrous healthcare law.
I am a nurse. My husband is a doctor. And together we are small business owners. We understand the very real and chilling effect that Obamacare is having on our healthcare providers and our economy. That’s why I left nursing – my life-long dream – in 2010 to run for Congress. And, it is still the reason that I leave my husband and son each week to go to Washington.
I am as committed to stopping Obamacare today as I was 3 years ago when I ran for Congress. But we have to do it the right way and we have to work together.
There are many different ideas on our side of the aisle for repealing and replacing Obamcare and I’ve been proud to vote 40 times on legislation that would repeal or dismantle the law. I have even introduced the DEFECT Act (Delaying Enrollment in Federal Exchanges to Certify Trust) to continue to combat Obamacare. . . .
The hardline Club for Growth (which has backed a string of disastrous hard-right Senate and House candidates) immediately sent out an e-mail blast denouncing her. So be it.
If more bright conservative stood up to loony ideas and thought as strategically as Ellmers does, the party, the House and the country would be better off.
So for this we say, well done Rep. Ellmers.