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Cruz and Utah’s Mike Lee take heat for latest delay tactic



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Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, said: "I get frustrated when people keep telling me to hang in there and do something, when it is not moving over there. I want the Senate to hang in and do something."

All four of Utah’s House members — Chaffetz, Bishop and Reps. Chris Stewart and Jim Matheson — voted for the bill that stripped out the health-care funding.

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"I’ve voted 41 times to defund. I’m of the realization that probably won’t happen," Chaffetz said. "But I do think delaying Obamacare for a year has a more realistic possibility of finding common ground."

He said the House doesn’t plan to just "swallow what the Senate sends up."

But that may depend on when the Senate acts on the bill. With the delay pushed by Lee and Cruz, the Senate will begin voting Friday and could send legislation back to the House over the weekend.

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, has announced that he would vote to end debate on the House bill but said he will miss that vote Friday because of a family responsibility.

He lamented that Democrats refused to budge when it comes to President Barack Obama’s signature health law, which opens insurance exchanges beginning Oct. 1.

"Republicans have given them every chance to get out of this mess and they seem to want to keep their feet right in the mess," he said.

Matheson was one of only two Democrats who supported the effort to defund Obamacare. He says it’s time to switch gears and simply pass a bill that keeps the government operating. He worries that any attempt to amend the bill that the Senate passes will result in a shutdown.

"I’ve always said it is a mistake for Congress to shut down the government," he said. "Assuming the bill is reasonable, sure, I’d vote to keep the government going."


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tburr@sltrib.com

mcanham@sltrib.com



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