Washington (CNN) – A conversation between two Republican senators caught on an open microphone Wednesday provided a candid look into their thoughts about the politics surrounding the government shutdown.
Talking about the Democrats' stance of refusing to negotiate a compromise to the shutdown stalemate, Senator Rand Paul told fellow Senator Mitch McConnell:
"It's awful for them to say that," Sen. Rand Paul told fellow Senator Mitch McConnell, in regards to the Democrats' stance of refusing to negotiate a compromise to end the shutdown stalemate.
"I don't think they poll tested 'we won't negotiate,'" Paul said.
Paul was coming off an interview with CNN's Erin Burnett, and he told McConnell, whose microphone was switched on for an interview with CNBC, that he has been saying over and over again that "we're willing to compromise, we're willing to negotiate."
Earlier, speaking to Burnett on her show "Out Front," Paul said "I would think you have to negotiate, which to me means discussing your differences and trying to get in the middle between the two. So we've been offering some compromises. I think that's what the American people want."
He told Burnett that the original Republican position was that they didn't want any Obamacare. "That is what we truly believe," said Paul, "we think it's bad for the country." Paul argued for a compromise to end the stalemate. "The president wants all of it, a 100 percent," he told CNN.
Yesterday senior White House adviser Dan Pfeiffer said, "what we're not for is negotiating with people who have a bomb strapped to their chest." And both of the Republicans from Kentucky agreed that that kind of Democratic stance will be bad for the Democrats.
In the candid moment caught on tape, McConnell told Paul that "after a two hour meeting" with Congressional Democrats, he found that the left side of the aisle is espousing "basically the same view privately as it was publicly."
"I know we don't want to be here," Paul told his fellow Republican from Kentucky, but "we're gonna win this I think."