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Saturday
Oct052013

GOP Weekly Address: Democrats 'Refusing to Negotiate' on Shutdown

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In this week's Republican address, Sen. John Cornyn says Republicans wish to end the government shutdown, but that Democrats in Congress and President Obama won't negotiate.

“It has become disturbingly clear that the Obama-Reid shutdown is no longer about health care, or spending, or ideology. It’s about politics, plain and simple," Cornyn says in the address.

"The Democrats have calculated that by prolonging the shutdown, and maximizing the pain, they can bully Republicans into doing whatever President Obama and Majority Leader Reid want them to do. It’s a very cynical game, but Democrats have decided to play it," he continues.

Read the full transcript of the Republican address:

"Hi, I’m Texas Senator John Cornyn. Every day, Capitol Hill police officers protect Members of Congress, and our visiting guests, with courage, dignity, and professionalism. Their tireless efforts often go unnoticed; but whenever they’re called upon to act in a moment of crisis, we’re reminded of their tremendous commitment and bravery. I want to take this opportunity to thank the Capitol Hill police for all that they do to protect our collective safety and security.

“Like most Americans, I was disappointed when certain parts of the federal government were forced to shut down because Senate Democrats refused to make any changes whatsoever to the deeply flawed health-care law known as Obamacare. Republicans are eager to end the shutdown and move ahead with the fiscal and economic reforms that our country so urgently needs. But we’re never going to make real progress without greater cooperation from our friends across the aisle.

“House Republicans have repeatedly sent over legislation that would fund federal operations, but Senate Democrats have rejected each and every bill. They’re effectively arguing that the House bills are simply illegitimate, because they contain policy measures that the Democrats don’t like.

“But what normally happens when the two parties disagree on policy is a negotiation. Each side gives up a little and gets a little, and you wind up with a bipartisan compromise. The problem right now is that Senate Democrats are refusing to negotiate. Here’s a partial list of what they have unanimously rejected:

“They’ve rejected a one-year delay in Obamacare’s health-insurance mandate for individuals and families, even though the Administration has already delayed the mandate for employers.

“They’ve rejected a bill that would force Members of Congress to obey the same health-care laws as everyone else.

“They’ve also rejected a bill that would abolish Obamacare’s medical-device tax, even though a majority of their caucus expressed support for repeal back in March. In other words, most Senate Democrats voted against the medical-device tax when it didn’t matter, and then voted to keep the tax when it did.

“Meanwhile, President Obama has threatened to veto a series of individual House bills that would fund our veterans’ programs, and our military-reserve programs, as well as the National Institutes of Health, and the D.C. city government. He’s also threatened to veto a bill that would keep open our war memorials, our national parks, and museums. When Republicans asked Senate Democrats to join with us and pass these bills, they simply said no. The White House recently claimed that somehow they were ‘winning’ and that it ‘doesn’t really matter’ how long the shutdown lasts.  Apparently they think the government shutdown is good politics, and they’re in no hurry to break the stalemate.

“It has become disturbingly clear that the Obama-Reid shutdown is no longer about health care, or spending, or ideology. It’s about politics, plain and simple. The Democrats have calculated that by prolonging the shutdown, and maximizing the pain, they can bully Republicans into doing whatever President Obama and Majority Leader Reid want them to do. It’s a very cynical game, but Democrats have decided to play it.

“All Republicans can do is to continue promoting common-sense solutions that would end the shutdown and allow us to move forward. Hopefully our friends across the aisle will eventually get tired of playing politics. Hopefully they’ll remember that neither house of Congress can set the national agenda all by itself.

“Thank you for listening, and may God bless the United States of America."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio