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GOP faults Obama ahead of shutdown

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Arizona Republican Rep. Matt Salmon said Monday that President Obama has been missing in action in the ongoing negotiations over spending that has pushed the nation to the brink of a government shutdown.

Mr. Salmon suggested that Mr. Obama could learn a lesson from the hands-on approach that President Clinton, the last Democrat to occupy the White House, took during around the fiscal fights that led to the 1995 government shutdown.

“It feels like deja vu all over again, as Yogi Berra would say, but there are a lot of differences,” Mr. Salmon said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “Even though the dynamics were pretty intense back then, just as they are today, one of the big differences is that Bill Clinton, who was president of the time, was actively engaged with our leadership. He was actively engaged with the Congress in trying to avert a shutdown, and they were meeting literally every day.”

“This president hasn’t been involved at all with the leadership of Congress,” he said.

Mr. Salmon voted for a stopgap spending bill over the weekend that would keep the government open and postpone the implementation of Obamacare.

He also voted to repeal the medical device tax and in support of a proposal that would ensure that military troops still get paid if the government shutdown.

Mr. Salmon said he believes the Affordable Care Act will hurt the jobs environment in his state.

“We would like to postpone the entire law,” Mr. Salmon said. “It is not ready for prime time.”

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