Rep. Jim Jordan said he is unwilling to vote for a temporary spending bill to reopen the federal government unless President Barack Obama agrees to revisions in the 2010 health care law, known as “Obamacare.”
“We have to get something on Obamacare, “Jordan, R-Urbana, told TV host Al Hunt on the show “Political Capital,” which will air this weekend on Bloomberg TV.
Jordan is considered a key conservative House member and a leader among the roughly 20 to 60 members with close ties to the Tea Party. Those members have become crucial in the fight over a spending bill that expired Sept. 30. They’d ideally like to see the health care law defunded, but some would settle for a one-year delay of a key component of that law.
Jordan represents the large 4th congressional district in Ohio covering Shelby and Champaign counties and more than 10 others going as far north as Lake Erie.
As the government shutdown drags into its second week, Jordan said it could end if the Obama administration would agree to delay a key provision in the president’s signature health care law.
Specifically, he argued it’s unfair that the Obama administration allowed a one-year delay of a mandate that requires companies with more than 50 full-time workers to offer health insurance to employees while still requiring individuals to purchase health insurance beginning in 2014.
“It’s an equal treatment under the law, basic American concept,” he said.
Jordan also linked the health care law to the decision to raise the $16.7 trillion debt limit. The current debt limit is expected to require sometime around Oct. 17. Jordan said that changing the health care law “has to be a part” of the idea to harness the nation’s debt.
“All we’re asking the president to do is treat Americans equal,” he said.
Jordan also said he was unwilling to allow the nation to default on its debts, but said it would be “extremely irresponsible” for President Obama to say he would not negotiate over the debt ceiling.
“I would hope that the president of the United States of America, the president of the greatest nation in history, would never take that position, where he is willing to go past the deadline, not pay our bills, simply because he wants to continue to treat Americans unfairly” he said.
Jordan also expressed his support for Speaker of the House John Boehner, who earlier this week indicated he would not let the United States default on its bills, privately signaling that he may have to pass a debt ceiling increase with the support of Democrats and a minority of Republicans.
“I like the speaker,” he said. “I think he’s doing a great job.”