Pelosi Calls Republicans 'Anti-Government Ideologues,' 'Legislative Arsonists'

By Susan Jones | September 23, 2013 | 7:30 AM EDT

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) (AP File Photo)

( - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says Republicans don't want to defund Obamacare -- they want to shut down the government because they're "anti-government ideologues."

"The Republicans put legislation on the floor that was intended to shut down government. For them, that's a victory, because they're anti-government ideologues who dominate the Republican Party," Pelosi told CNN's "State of the Union with Candy Crowley."

Republicans want to defund Obamacare, Crowley clarified.

"No, they want to shut down the government," Pelosi responded. The California Democrat said trying to defund the Affordable Care Act through a continuing resolution will shut down the government. "They  know that," she said. "They know that has no prospect of prevailing."

Republicans' objections to Obamacare -- that it is hurting businesses and eliminating full-time jobs -- are just excuses, not a reason to kill Obamacare, Pelosi said.

Pelosi also objects to the level of sequester-induced funding in the continuing resolution that passed the House last week, and she called Republicans "legislative arsonists" for trying to reduce the growth of the federal budget:

"But for many of them, I call them legislative arsonists. They're there to burn down what we should be building up in terms of investments in education and scientific research and all that it is that makes our country great and competitive. I don't paint them all with the same brush. And I certainly don't paint the speaker (Rep. John Boehner) with that brush. But enough of them in their caucus to shut down government. That would be a victory for them."

Pelosi called Obamacare a "liberation" for the American people.

"This is life, healthy life, liberty, the freedom to pursue your happiness which could be follow your passion for good rather than follow your palate and be constrained by your policy. It's about wellness. It's about prevention, it's about a healthier America."

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