Republican senators admit healthcare overreach in shutdown

As the government shutdown enters its third week, three Republican senators said this weekend that attempting to tie funding the government to repealing healthcare reform was a misstep, The Hill reports.

Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) said his party overreached, telling Fox News' Chris Wallace that repealing legislation that was "central to the president's agenda" was "not ... achievable," according to the article.

Meanwhile, Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.) on ABC's "This Week" said the repeal effort was "unrealistic" and that Republicans in Congress "never had the leverage through the shutdown."

"The sooner this is over, the better this is for us guys," Graham added, according to The Hill.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) similarly said on CBS's "Face the Nation" that the shutdown was a no-win situation for the GOP. "We're on a fool's errand when we say we're going to defund Obamacare," he said, according to The Hill.

McCain's remarks echoed a similar statement he made last week on CNN specifically blaming Tea Party Republicans for the situation, according to the Huffington Post.

"We fought as hard as we could in a fair and honest manner and we lost," McCain said, according to the article. "One of the reasons was because we were in the minority, and in democracies, almost always the majority governs and passes legislation."

The shutdown resulted from the Republican-controlled House of Representatives passing an appropriations bill with an amendment that would strip healthcare reform funding from the law. When the Senate rejected the amendment, the House passed another appropriations bill delaying healthcare reform for a year and removing its tax on medical devices, which also faced rejection, FierceHealthcare previously reported.

More Americans fault Congressional Republicans for the shutdown than blame President Barack Obama or Congressional Democrats, according to The Hill.

Graham emphasized that if the party cut its losses on healthcare reform, the law could be "the political gift that keeps on giving."

To learn more:
- here's the Hill article
- read the Huffington Post article