Congress needed to fund the government by the beginning of the fiscal year. But some Republicans were so opposed to Obamacare that they held budget negotiations hostage in an attempt to repeal, defund, or delay the law, even though that meant a government shutdown, something the American people were overwhelmingly opposed to. Senate Democrats and House Republicans were in a stalemate, and their absolute refusal to negotiate led to a 16-day government shutdown. By trying to repeal or defund Obamacare, House Republicans put women’s access to health care at risk. One of the proposals included eliminating the women’s preventive benefit — jeopardizing women access to birth control with no copayment and allowing bosses to make the decisions about a women’s health care. Despite the government shutdown, many women’s programs avoided any real damage. For example:
- People were still able to enroll for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act because the law was funded, outside of Congress’ appropriations process. Learn more about how Obamacare Works.
- Title X health centers continued to operate because they received funding before the fiscal year ended.