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Attempt to kill Obamacare ended up hurting nation

Because a small group of radical Republicans is willing to do anything to stop the Affordable Care Act, they have actually harmed the United States economy in their misguided attempt to prevent established law from being enacted.

Make no mistake about it, the tea party wing of the Republican Party made a conscious choice to hold the American economy hostage in its misguided crusade to prevent millions of Americans from acquiring affordable health insurance. They cannot shift the blame to their opponents.

As they pursued their futile policy they shut down all “non-essential” government services, which resulted in furloughs for hundreds of thousands of federal workers. These were the fortunate ones because the compromise reached at the last hour will provide back pay for the wages lost.

The private sector workers who were idled by the shutdown have no such cushion to fall back on. Economists estimate that the shutdown will reduce economic growth by three tenths of a percent this year. A sterling achievement for the supposed champions of the private sector.

And after the fact, certain members of our local delegation try to disavow their support for the ruinous tactics of the extremists in Congress. We should ask them why they continually voted against a clean continuing resolution, one that could have passed the House with bipartisan support, if they did not support the policies of the radical right.

One year from now we will be in the closing days of congressional elections and the voters will have an opportunity to hold their representatives accountable for this duplicity.

James A. Kolbe

Tonawanda