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Democrats Fear Government Shutdown As GOP Divides Over Affordable Care Act

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Democrats are warning that divisions within the Republican Party over the Affordable Care Act could bring the government to a halt at the end of the month. NY1's Michael Scotto filed the following report.

On Thursday, House Republicans voted for the 41st time to scale back the Affordable Care Act.

Like previous attempts, this one has no shot at becoming law, but Democrats fear the GOP's efforts to kill health care reform will soon have consequences that extend well beyond health insurance.

"When they threaten a shutdown, they're telling cancer patients that research on cures for diseases can't go forward until we kill Obamacare," said Sen. Charles Schumer.

Conservative Republicans are pushing their colleagues to shut down the government on October 1 if the Affordable Care Act isn't de-funded.

Moderate Republicans oppose the effort, and that has left Republican leaders, who met with their Democratic counterparts on Thursday, scrambling to find a solution that appeals to both sides of the splintered GOP, as well as Democrats, who will reject any effort to kill health care reform.

"There are a lot of discussions going on about how to deal with the CR and issue of Obamacare, and so we're continuing to work with our members," said House Speaker John Boehner.

Democrats believe they have the upper hand on the issue.

In fact, some, like Schumer, believe Republicans will blink in the end, when the GOP realizes it will be difficult to defend a government shutdown during next year's midterm elections.

But some Democrats aren't convinced yet that Republicans will hold their fire.

"I'm almost 40-60 that they won't get it, you know, 'cause it seems from what I've heard from my colleagues on the other side, they're not moving," said Queens Rep. Gregory Meeks.

Both sides have until the end of the month to resolve this.

Even if they do, however, the issue of the Affordable Care Act likely won't go away and could lead to a government default just a few weeks later.

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