Senior Utah lawmaker Orrin Hatch was one of them. Hatch says simply, it was the right thing to do. He says voting “yes” was what’s best for the nation. But that doesn’t mean the fight against the Affordable Care Act is over.
After 16 days, it finally happened. Hatch voted “yes” to end the stalemate in Congress.
“Cause it was the right thing to do. You have to act like adults around here someday,” said Utah Senator Orrin Hatch.
But his counterpart, Senator Mike Lee, vowed to continue the fight.
“I don't want to call it a dumb idea, but it wasn't a smart idea,” said Hatch.
Hatch says that was the wrong approach, but he doesn’t blame Lee or any other Republicans who stood their ground. He says many were being influenced, even threatened by extreme right groups. He says many were being influenced, even threatened by extreme right groups. But he says after decades in politics, you can’t just try. You have to have reasoning and win.
“Every Republican is against Obamacare we're all against it. But there was no end game. There was no way to succeed without discombobulating the whole country and the whole world. And even then they would not have conceded,” said Hatch.
Hatch says the fight against the Affordable Care Act could not have been won on this kind of platform. In fact, he says, the political battle overshadowed the launch of what he calls a failed system.
“What this battle did is that it took the public's eyes off of the real issue, that is a self-destructing Obamacare that is literally taking us down to economic disaster,” said Hatch.
He doesn’t call his “yes” vote a sign of defeat. But a decision to let this battle go, while eyeing a bigger and better game plan for the country in the future.
“The way to solve these problems is to elect more republicans and get more conservatives in Congress so we can get rid of these stupid laws so we live within our means,” said Hatch.
Hatch says he hopes we don’t have Round Two of this in winter when we reach the next deadline. There’s a special budget committee that’s supposed to be working on a long-term solution. The senator plans to offer his advice to that group.