Rand Paul: Obama 'won' in shutdown deal but now he'll have to pick up the tab

10/17/2013 07:59 PM

OWENSBORO — Republicans didn’t get much of what they wanted out of the deal to end the shutdown and raise the debt limit but probably couldn’t have manged much more, said Republican U.S. Sen. Rand Paul said Thursday, the day after the agreement passed.

“I’m not sure how” Republicans could have gotten more, Paul told Pure Politics after his speech at a health care forum at Owensboro Medical Health System Hospital.

Paul, who was among 18 Republican senators to vote against the deal, said he was most disappointed that the legislation did nothing to address the long-term federal spending trajectory that will continue to add debt to the nearly $17 trillion mountain.

Paul stopped short of saying Republicans went down the wrong path last month by linking efforts to defund or delay the Affordable Care Act to a continuing resolution to extend funding for the budget. That led to the stalemate and partial government shutdown for 16 days. And shutting down the government, Paul said, “was never a good idea.”

During his remarks to more than 120 health care professionals and community leaders in Owensboro, Paul said, tactically, President Barack Obama was able to get what he wanted by not compromising. But there will be policy and political consequences as a result of the continued spending beyond what the government brings in, he added.

“He did hold firm. He won. He got 100 percent of Obamacare without changes. He got 100 percent of the spending without changes. But he owns now 100 percent of a $17 trillion debt that’s getting worse as we speak,” he said.

Although it’s not in the bill that Obama signed into law, the agreement brokered between Democratic Senate Leader Harry Reid and Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell calls for a supercommittee-like group of U.S. representatives and senators to suggest long-term spending reforms. The committee is scheduled to

“I’m not very optimistic,” Paul said.

Find out why and what Paul wants to see in this two-minute clip:

(For more on what Paul said about McConnell’s role in the negotiations and the next steps in addressing the debt and issues with the Affordable Care Act, watch “Pure Politics” Friday night at 7 p.m. EST/6 Central on Time Warner Cable’s cn|2)


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