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FLASH: Mitch McConnell, Ron Johnson Oppose Conservatives' Effort to Defund Obamacare

Why haven’t establishment Republicans like Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Wisconsin’s Ron Johnson embraced conservatives' efforts to draw that line in the sand and put a united Senate Republican Conference behind the effort to defund Obamacare?
Mitch McConnell and Ron Johnson

Multiple Capitol Hill sources have confirmed that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson and several other undisclosed establishment GOP Senators are quietly trying to thwart the efforts of principled limited government constitutional conservative Senators Mike Lee, Ted Cruz and Rand Paul to pull together a broad coalition of Republicans to defund Obamacare in the upcoming continuing resolution.

The behind the scenes maneuvering of McConnell, Johnson and other establishment Republicans prompted the Club for Growth’s Chris Chocola to issue a statement calling out McConnell and challenging him to back Lee’s efforts to stop Obamacare before the Obama administration begins to fully implement the law.

“If Senator McConnell is committed to defunding Obamacare, then he should sign the Lee letter and promise not to support a continuing resolution or any budget that funds Obamacare,” said Chocola. “We are disappointed by rumors that Senate Republican leadership is pressuring Senators not to sign Lee’s letter or to remove their names – they should instead encourage others to sign on.”

Our friend Eric Erickson over at RedState put the argument succinctly when he wrote, “Republicans in Congress have a choice this fall with the latest continuing resolution. They can choose to not include funding for the implementation of Obamacare. Negotiate everything, but make that their line in the sand. If the Democrats choose to shut down the government over an unpopular law that hurts people, it is their choice. Republicans should not fund Obamacare.”

Why haven’t establishment Republicans like Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Wisconsin’s Ron Johnson embraced Lee’s effort to draw that line in the sand and put a united Senate Republican Conference behind the effort to defund Obamacare?

No one knows for sure, because, as usual McConnell, Johnson and the Republican establishment are operating from the shadows, using behind the scenes political pressure instead of actually engaging in an open debate about the merits of Mike Lee’s call for a strategy to defund Obamacare based on conservative principles, rather than the usual Capitol Hill Republican say one thing, do another culture.

We agree with Chocola and Erickson.

Any Republican, starting with Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, who chooses to fund Obamacare should be primaried. As Erick Erickson said a few days ago, “The advertisements write themselves. Republicans, by voting to fund Obamacare, are putting people out of work, driving up healthcare costs, and hurting families. Republicans are not listening to voters who hate the law if they fund Obamacare.”

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If Mitch McConnel is so great why is he not supporting Mike Lee's bill to Defund Obama no care? Why is TPNN endorsing him already? Now he thinks he can do whatever he wants because he thinks Tea Partiers support him. Scottie Hughes is too cute by far.

Ron Johnson - An Establishment Republican?

Ron Johnson was elected when he defeated Democrat Russ Feingold and did it with the backing of Jim Demint and the Senate Conservatives Fund. He has been a solid conservative, though not so outspoken as Lee, Cruz or Paul. Including his name in a list of establishment Republicans casts doubt on The fact that he opposes the effort worries me and I will certainly ask him why, but I do not believe one becomes "establishment" in their first term.

Shame on ConservativeHQ for a misleading headline.


You don't have to be a member of an organization for a certain period of time to be Establishment. It is a state of mind and like Rubio, he is proving he is part of that mind set. If you are against defunding ObamaCare, you're for it.

list of GOP Senators

Have Signed on to Senator Lee's Letter: (Thank these Senators)

Marco Rubio, FL: (202) 224-3041
Chuck Grassley, IA: (202) 224-3744
James Risch, ID: (202) 224-2752
Mark Kirk, IL: (202) 224-2854
Rand Paul, KY: (202) 224-4343
David Vitter, LA: (202) 224-4623
Roger Wicker, MS: (202) 224-6253
Deb Fischer, NE: (202) 224-6551
Jeff Chiesa, NJ: (202) 224-3224
Jim Inhofe, OK: (202) 224-4721
John Thune, SD: (202) 224-2321
John Cornyn, TX: (202) 224-2934
Ted Cruz, TX: (202) 224-5922
Mike Lee, UT: (202) 224-5444
Mike Enzi, WY: (202) 224-3424

Have Not Signed on to Senator Lee's Letter: (Encourage these Senators)

Lisa Murkowski, AK: (202) 224-6665
Jeff Sessions, AL: (202) 224-4124
Richard Shelby, AL: (202) 224-5744
John Boozman, AR: (202) 224-4843
Jeff Flake, AZ: (202) 224-4521
John McCain, AZ: (202) 224-2235
Saxby Chambliss, GA: (202) 224-3521
Johnny Isakson, GA: (202) 224-3643
Mike Crapo, ID: (202) 224-6142
Dan Coats, IN: (202) 224-5623
Jerry Moran, KS: (202) 224-6521
Pat Roberts, KS: (202) 224-4774
Mitch McConnell, KY: (202) 224-2541
Susan Collins, ME: (202) 224-2523
Roy Blunt, MO: (202) 224-5721
Thad Cochran, MS: (202) 224-5054
Richard Burr, NC: (202) 224-3154
John Hoeven, ND: (202) 224-2551
Mike Johanns, NE: (202) 224-4224
Kelly Ayotte, NH: (202) 224-3324
Dean Heller, NV: (202) 224-6244
Rob Portman, OH: (202) 224-3353
Tom Coburn, OK: (202) 224-5754
Pat Toomey, PA: (202) 224-4254
Lindsey Graham, SC: (202) 224-5972
Tim Scott, SC: (202) 224-6121
Lamar Alexander, TN: (202) 224-4944
Bob Corker, TN: (202) 224-3344
Orrin Hatch, UT: (202) 224-5251
Ron Johnson, WI: (202) 224-5323
John Barrasso, WY: (202) 224-6441


Sen. John Cornyn, TX has changed his mind and removed his name. No one yet knows why.