Mitt Romney to GOP: Shutting down government is a bad idea

Updated
Former Massachusetts Gov., and 2012 Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney gestures as he speaks at the 40th annual Conservative Political Action...
Former Massachusetts Gov., and 2012 Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney gestures as he speaks at the 40th annual Conservative Political Action...
Jacquelyn Martin/AP

Mitt Romney is trying to knock some sense into congressional Republicans—shutting down the government over Obamacare will hurt the country.

“I badly want Obamacare to go away, and stripping it of funds has appeal. But we need to exercise great care about any talk of shutting down government,” Romney said on Tuesday. “What would come next when soldiers aren’t paid, when seniors fear for their Medicare and Social Security, and when the FBI is off duty?”

The push from far-right conservatives like Tea Party Senators Ted Cruz of Texas and Mike Lee of Utah to de-fund the healthcare law would be largely symbolic. The healthcare law’s funding is automatic, Congress can’t cut this year’s funding through a budgetary measure.

“I think there are better ways to remove Obamacare. And we should work to replace it with healthcare reforms that actually lower costs and give patients—not government—control over their own healthcare.”

Romney joins the growing group of moderate Republicans who are calling out GOPers who say they’re willing to shut down the government if it means they can, on paper, defund Obamacare. He spoke at a fundraiser for New Hampshire’s Republican Party that was closed to the media, remarks were released to the press.

Though Romney has long opposed the president’s universal healthcare law, Obamacare was actually based on the law that Romney passed when he was governor of Massachusetts. The president and his advisers even interviewed the advisers and experts who helped write and advise the so-called Romneycare law when crafting their own bill.

Mitt Romney to GOP: Shutting down government is a bad idea

Updated