President Barack Obama blasted Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) over his opposition to the Affordable Care Act on Wednesday — and did so without mentioning Cruz’s name.
Obama spoke Wednesday night at a Dallas fundraiser for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, his second stop of three in Cruz’s home state. He shouted out “a few” lawmakers from Texas when pointing to Republican obstruction in Congress — particularly “one senator from Texas” who he said chose to force a government shutdown last month over Obamacare.
“Now, I’ll give you the second example of what precipitated — according to at least one senator from Texas — the necessity for the shutdown, and that is the Affordable Care Act. Now, I think it’s fair to say that right now I am not happy with some IT people in Washington,” Obama said to laughter, according to a White House transcript.
“The website has not functioned. Nobody is angrier than I am about it. And we’ve got to make sure that we get it fixed, and we’re going to get it fixed by the end of this month. […]
“In the State of Texas, you’ve got more uninsured people than anyplace in the country. Higher percentage of people are uninsured here than anywhere else. Setting the website aside, if the Governor and the legislature chose to do so, right now they could insure a million people in Texas. A million people could have health insurance; 133,000 could have health insurance in Dallas alone — 133,000 people who right now aren’t getting regular checkups, don’t have the capacity to deal with chronic illnesses, end up in the emergency room, cost every one of you money in terms of higher premiums because the hospitals and providers got to get their money back from somewhere. And the only reason we’re not doing it is ideology.”
Obama’s comments came after Cruz had released a statement earlier in the day, saying Obama should “take his broken promises tour elsewhere.” He touched on the troubled rollout of the dysfunctional website, HealthCare.gov, as well as Obama’s broad previous claim that consumers could keep their plans if they like them.
“President Obama’s trip to Texas brings nothing with it but broken promises. He promised that Americans could keep their health care plans. We were told premiums would go down, that jobs would be created. And we now know these are all false promises,” Cruz said.
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