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Sen. Jeff Flake on defund-Obamacare attack ad: 'Oh, whatever'

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Sen. Jeff Flake dismissed the attacks being launched against him for refusing to embrace the no-holds-barred campaign to defund Obamacare that could lead to a government shutdown.

“Oh, whatever,” Mr. Flake, Arizona Republican, said via Twitter.

SPECIAL COVERAGE: Health Care Reform

Mr. Flake’s response was highlighted Tuesday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” on which former Florida GOP Rep. Joe Scarborough, a co-host, called Mr. Flake a “real conservative.”

“My party is pushing back on this,” Mr. Scarborough said. “These extremists are being shown to be extremists, and people are starting to stand up and say, ‘You know, if you want to destroy your political chances for the next 50 years, if you want to try to get Hillary Clinton elected by shutting down the government and pissing people off, go ahead, do it, but not in our party.”

The Senate Conservatives Fund (SCF) is running a series of ads against Republican lawmakers who have not been using the appropriations process to cut funding for Obamacare — even if it leads to a government shutdown.

“Republicans in Congress can stop Obamacare by simply refusing to fund it, but Senator Jeff Flake is nowhere to be found,” the narrator says in the ad. “Jeff Flake won’t stand up to President Obama and join conservatives in pledging to oppose funding for the implementation of Obamacare.”

Mr. Flake opposes Obamacare but refuses to sign the SCF pledge to reject any spending bills that fund the law.

The SCF is running similar ads against Republican Sens. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Johnny Isakson of Georgia, Thad Cochran in Mississippi, and Richard Burr in North Carolina.

Meanwhile, former South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint, the Republican who founded the SCF and ran the group through the end of last year, is headlining the Heritage Action “Defund Obamacare Town Hall Tour.”

Mr. DeMint, who now leads the Heritage Foundation, has teamed up with the likes of Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican.

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