He was among the minority of Republicans to approve the measure
U.S. Rep. John Kline, R-Burnsville, was among the about one-third of Republicans who approved legislation late Wednesday night to reopen the federal government and raise the debt ceiling.
Kline, along with U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen, R-Eden Prairie, voted for the compromise that tasks a joint House-Senate committee with developing a budget deal before mid-December.
“Today, members of Congress were asked to make a difficult decision,” Kline said in a statement released Thursday. “Ultimately, I was not willing to put the full faith and credit of the United States at risk. Congress and the White House must put country first. The result was imperfect, but it was a temporary solution I believed was in the best interest of Americans.”
Republicans sought changes to the Affordable Care Act before agreeing to raise the debt ceiling, but no alterations were made to the federal health care law through Wednesday night’s action.
Kline says he will continue to press for changes in the so-called Obamacare law.
“Moving forward, we must address runaway spending, the debt, and failed policies like Obamacare that are barriers to our economic recovery and threaten the future of our children and grandchildren,” Kline said in the statement. “Our record-high debt is as much the result of failed leadership as it is failed policies that grew government instead of our economy. We must tackle the pressing issues Americans sent us to Washington to face.”
U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Stillwater, was the only Minnesotan to vote no on the compromise plan along with 143 other House Republicans. Eighty-seven House Republicans voted for it.
Democrat U.S. Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken voted for the measure.
Eagan resident Mike Obermueller, a candidate for the Democrats endorsement in the 2nd District, said in a statement that Kline orchestrated the shutdown.
“He’s part of the so-called Republican leadership team who for the past 16 days has consistently rejected efforts to get it back up and running,” said Obermueller, who lost to Kline in the 2012 election by eight percentage points.
“Seniors, and military families that have been adversely affected by this reckless behavior and needless uncertainty and had it not been for the House Republicans, this could have been resolved weeks ago,” Obermueller said.
Bachmann told Devin Henry of MinnPost “this was a fight worth having.”
“Ultimately (this fight)’s about what type of government we want to have,” she said. “The president is insisting that he be the only decision-maker when it comes to something as crucial as the budget. What we’re saying is that’s not the way our government works.”
The House voted 285-144 to approve bill, which funds the government until Jan. 15 and raises the debt ceiling until Feb. 7. The Senate voted 81-18.