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Thank you, Mr. President!

As the government shut down drags on and some Republicans insist that the president and Democrats won’t “negotiate” with them, the president called them out.

This is all about a small group of Tea Party Republicans in the House who are adamantly opposed to Obamacare. They huff and puff and wave their copies of the Constitution, but don’t seem to care that the Affordable Care Act is the law of the land, passed by Congress, signed by the president and ruled to be constitutional by the Supreme Court. That’s the way we do business in this country.

Let’s be clear. These folks are small minority and represent only 18 percent of the American population. Because none of them won with 100 percent of the vote in their districts, the real number is probably more like 10 percent. But that’s not why their credibility with me is zero. Right after the 2012 term began, they promised to get all the appropriate committees in the House of Representatives working on a healthcare plan that would be better than Obamacare. They haven’t, even though that’s the way we do business in this country.

At a recent public appearance, the president challenged them on that point, inviting them to improve the law. Thank you, Mr. President. We’re all waiting for their ideas. We’ve been waiting for 20 months.

I’m no expert in healthcare matters but I know the current system is badly broken. People die because they don’t have access to health care. Others go bankrupt because they don’t have insurance. I don’t know if Obamacare is the answer. I do know it’s an answer. I want to see the Republicans’ answer. If it provides better care for more people for less money, I’m on board.