Skip to comments.Ted Cruz Punches Back
Posted on 09/20/2013 3:37:47 AM PDT by nikos1121
Even among Republicans, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas is one of Washingtons most divisive figures. Activists love him, but leadership staffers and many of his colleagues cant stand him especially his latest effort to connect a government-spending bill with the defunding of Obamacare. After a Senate luncheon on Tuesday, several Republicans told me theyre tired of Cruzs campaign, and one senator, after rolling his eyes, called it a Passion play.
The internecine tensions spilled over to the House on Wednesday, when a group of Republicans knocked Cruz on Twitter for appearing to back down from the defunding fight. Speaker John Boehner had just decided to bring a Cruz-inspired bill to the floor, and instead of rallying the Senate, Cruz issued a statement that left the burden of defunding Obamacare squarely on the lower chamber. Harry Reid will no doubt try to strip the defund language from the continuing resolution, and right now he likely has the votes to do so, Cruz said. At that point, House Republicans must stand firm, hold their ground, and continue to listen to the American people.
Of course, Cruzs acknowledgement of the near-impossibility of passing a defunding bill through the Democratic-controlled Senate is an accurate reading of political reality. But House Republicans didnt care; they were apoplectic with Cruz not only for laying the responsibility for defunding on them, but for making them seem weak. If Cruz doesnt help us in the Senate to pass a defunding bill, well end up having to pass a normal CR, complains a veteran House Republican. Itll be pathetic, but I expect him to slam us for it.
House insiders say a handful of House Republicans cursed Cruz in the cloakroom on Wednesday, and a leadership source says angry e-mails were exchanged among GOP staffers who consider Cruz to be a charlatan. Cruz keeps raising conservatives hopes, and then, when we give him what he wants, he doesnt have a plan to follow through, an aide fumes. Hes an amateur. Another aide says, Nancy Pelosi is more well-liked around here.
Cruz, however, tells me House Republicans are wrong to be infuriated. In an interview, he says his goal was never to whip together votes in the Senate for a defunding bill; it was always to inspire a grassroots uprising that would rattle Congress and President Obama, and hopefully defund Obamacare.
Im convinced there is a new paradigm in politics the rise of the grassroots, Cruz says. He cites Senator Rand Pauls filibuster on drone policy, and the debates on Syria and gun control, as recent examples of how an overwhelming number of phone calls and e-mails from constituents can force the president to buckle.
And on Obamacare, Ive said, from the start, that if typical Washington rules apply, we cant win this fight, he explains. If the forums in which we make this case consist of the smoke-filled rooms of Washington, the votes arent there. The only way this fight will be won is if the American people rise up and hold our elected officials accountable.
Cruz says he salutes Boehner and House Republicans for moving forward with a vote on defunding, but he stands by his belief that one vote this week isnt enough. When I say the House needs to stand strong, its because the fight will be won or lost in the House of Representatives, he says. I cant win this fight, and Mike Lee cant win this fight, but he believes the House GOP can.
Cruzs advisers agree, and Chip Roy, his chief of staff, has pushed back hard against Cruzs House critics. Senator Cruz is doing what he said he would do when he came to Washington, Roy tells me. He promised to do everything he can to stop Obamacare before it begins hurting real people and further harms our economy.
His staff is working with whomever we can to achieve that goal, including House and Senate staff, Roy adds. For every story about a staffer grumbling behind the scenes, there are dozens of staffers who tell us how excited they are Senator Cruz is standing up to business as usual.
For the moment, though, the divide between Cruz and his fellow Republicans is growing. House Republicans will pass their defund-CR bill on Friday, and it will head to a quick death in the Senate. Cruz may shrug off his detractors, but as the deadline for government funding nears, he has become a top target not just for Democrats, but also for Republicans who want to pin the mess on him.
Robert Costa is National Reviews Washington editor.
Cruz is telling us all how it is. Of course this will be won in the House. We must stand together. If you haven't listened to Mark Levin's Monologue, please do so. It's still posted on the side bar where I hope it stays for the next several weeks.
Ted, I'm behind you 100%!!!!!!!!!!
Several repubs complained about him, didn’t want to be named, apparently....
ALL REPUBLICANs need to be Shouting..”WE ARE NOT SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVT....WE ARE FUNDING IT EXCEPT FOR OBAMACARE....AND IF THE MEDIA CONTINUES TO SAY WE ARE SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVT., THEY WILL BE LYING TO YOU”!!!
I dunno. Maybe, if the Republicans would do what is right and not worry about messes, their recent electoral problems would evaporate. We aren't electing them to see how much they can spend. We're electing them to cut government and represent our interests. They have forgotten that.
Ted isn't my senator (I'm "represented" by Feinstein and Boxer), but maybe I should write him a note of encouragement anyway.
What I like about it, is that to the common man Cruz will be a hero.
Secondly, not many people have heard him speak. I wish he had the voice of Ronald Reagan or John Wayne. He doesn’t. It squeaky like Sarah’s and a bit irritating, but I’m hoping it will grow on everyone.
One thing is for sure. He thinks on his feet very very clearly. No vocalized pauses, like Obama.
I’m glad the Peter Kings out there and other establishment politicians are upset, that way he is a voice of the people and not the party.
Trust me, people like this. And lastly...
Even if he fails he will have won.
The House GOP weenies don’t get what he’s telling them-—they have the power of the purse and NOT the Senate or Obama. Instead, all they care about is blame and the next election. He’s forcing them to take a stand and they don’t like it. TOUGH!
Yeah, if the grumblers are sooooo convinced that Cruz is speaking only for a small "fringe" within the Republican/Conservative base, then why are they always afraid to reveal their names in these hit pieces?
‘Sources reveal’, ‘insiders say’...anyone else getting sick and tired of this BS? The only name I see in this article is Cruz...let’s NAME some of these ‘insiders’, or I have to believe that NRO is just making this up.
I am more hopeful today than I have been in a long time.
Let’s all do what we can in our own way to support him. I just hope he doesn’t cave. I don’t think he will. If you’ve listened to his father speak, you know that he instilled toughness into his son.
I think too, that Cruz believes he can persuade people thru his rhetoric. Hey, two weeks ago we never would have thought Boehner would have supported this. I think he knows now what he has to do.
The ball is now in the Senate. It’s in Harry Reid’s lap. If Reid tries to strip out the bill then Ted can get up there an filibuster. I hope to hell he has one of those Texas Catheters on, and he talks as long as Strom Thurmond did for 24 hrs and 18 min.
I STAND WITH CRUZ AND I STAND AGAINST ALL THAT HAVE SPOKEN AGAINST TED. We want the names of these so called republicans. If they do not like Ted then we will help them... by firing their sorry asses and electing men and women that will stand with TED. WE HATE YOU RINOS MORE THAN WE DESPISE OBAMA AND THAT IS ITSELF IS ENDLESS AND UNMEASURABLE!
God Bless Ted Cruz!
I am certainly hoping that the House passes this bill and that the Senate is beset in a battle where, when they eventually kill this defund, it will be ONLY with Democrat votes and EVERY Republican Senator voting to keep it in. Further, when this Senate abortion is passed and it goes back to conference committee, it is rejected outright by House Republicans, i.e., no budget, no CR - shutdown impasse. I really don’t care if Obama gets his money.
Given the unattributed comments by several unnamed ‘republicans’ I’d say that our house is infested, infested with the RINO bug. Honestly, I think that the only thing that will jolt these bugs out of hiding and into obedience is to eviscerate their ranks in the pre-November 2014 primaries.
It is a very sad thing that when you are involved in an epic battle with your enemy, you have troops in your own trench knifing you in the back.
“ALL REPUBLICANs need to be Shouting..WE ARE NOT SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVT....WE ARE FUNDING IT EXCEPT FOR OBAMACARE....AND IF THE MEDIA CONTINUES TO SAY WE ARE SHUTTING DOWN THE GOVT., THEY WILL BE LYING TO YOU!!!”
Those low information voters are scared $h!tless that their monthly stipend of free stuff will be interrupted. Consequently, nothing else registers with them.
His voice is fine enough to debate 9 cases before the SCOTUS. I beleive that he and his team won all 9.
No you are wrong, with all do respect. I happened to switch channels to see who was on Cross Fire last night. I caught the tale end of Wolf Blitzer. He did almost five minutes with Peter King and one other republican from the House and they were excoriating Cruz.
Peter King said something to the effect, “I wish Ted Cruz would just shut up, and mind his own business. Stay the hell out of our business in the Senate, etc etc.”
I thought to myself at first, “What an SOB! I can’t believe he spoke ill of a fellow Republican, breaking the 11th Commandment.”
But I thought, this couldn’t be better, because it puts Cruz in the middle of both parties, and he will now be a man of the people.
I can’t wait to see what will happen....
No not all 9. To tired to google, but arguing 9 is very impressive in an of itself.
Yes. How can it be that if it is so perfectly clear to people like yourself and the majority of us who post here, then why the hell can’t republicans understand it?