The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee began automated phone calls Tuesday in Pennsylvania’s 8th District, urging voters to connect with Republican Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick to warn him not to support his party’s threat to shut down the federal government in the fight over Obamacare.
“Press 1 to be connected…and tell him to stop the nonsense and focus on common sense solutions that protect our health care and grow our economy,” the call says, according to a transcript.
Republicans say their counterparts are wasting money.
"Apparently the folks at the DCCC do not pay much attention to what goes on outside of their Washington D.C. headquarters," said Ian Prior, spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee. "Congressman Fitzpatrick has made it crystal clear that, despite his opposition to Obamacare, a government shutdown is off the table for him."
Phone calls will continue through the end of the week, DCCC officials said.
The White House and the Republican House majority are again heading toward a confrontation over the debt ceiling, the limit on U.S. borrowing capacity, which must be raised to authorize the payment of debts already incurred. Many conservative Republicans in the House are threatening to withhold that approval, leading to a government shutdown, if Obamacare is not dismantled.
“And what does this mean for you?” the robocall says. “It means Republicans are trying to take away your right to health insurance – even if you have a preexisting condition – and let the insurance companies start charging outrageous rates again. And if they can’t get it done, they are going to close the doors of our government.”
For Democrats, the idea is to put Fitzpatrick in a pincers on the issue. Already, leaders of five tea party/patriot groups in the district have signed a letter demanding that the representative “back up his words with action” by pledging to vote to “defund” the health-care law.