Cruz promises Republican victory in shutdown fight
October 5th, 2013
11:12 PM ET
5 years ago

Cruz promises Republican victory in shutdown fight

Richmond, Virginia (CNN) - Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, blamed by Democrats and some of his fellow Republicans as a chief architect of the ongoing government shutdown, struck back on Saturday, faulting President Obama and Senate Democrats for the political stalemate.

“Let me be very clear, I don’t think we should be in a shutdown,” Cruz said in a speech to conservatives in the Virginia state capital. “Throughout the course of it, I have said we should not shut down the government. But sadly this is Harry Reid’s and President Obama's shutdown.”

The government shutdown began Tuesday when the president refused to give in to Republican demands that he delay or change the Affordable Care Act, the signature achievement of his first term that began enrolling patients on October 1, in exchange for passing a routine spending bill.

Watch CNN's "State of the Union" for an exclusive interview with Republican Sen. Ted Cruz at 9 a.m. and noon ET.

In the run-up to the shutdown, Cruz - whose profile has risen considerably among conservatives since taking office this year - had lobbied Republicans in the House and Senate not to relent, even as the president was promising not to sign any bill that would alter "Obamacare."

Cruz reminded the audience that House Republicans have passed multiple “narrowly targeted continuing resolutions” to fund parts of the government as negotiations continue, but he criticized Democrats for refusing to pass them.

He said Senate Democrats are “dug in.”

“We are in the midst of a battle,” Cruz said. “Their position is untenable right now.”

Cruz, who spoke without notes for nearly an hour, said Republicans would win the shutdown fight but offered little in the way of concrete solutions.

“How do we win?” he asked. “If you trust the media, if you trust the voices in Washington, if you even trust, god forbid, some of the elected Republicans in Washington, they say we can’t win this fight. The only way to win this fight is the way we won every other fight throughout the history of the republic, which is solutions don’t come from Washington, D.C., they come from the people.”

“Career politicians in both parties have gotten us into this mess,” he said. “But it’s going to be the American people who get us out.”

According to a CBS News poll released this week, 72% of Americans disapprove of the shutdown, and more Americans blame Republicans in Congress than Obama.

But the audience inside a convention center ballroom here was firmly behind Cruz, interrupting his speech frequently with applause.

“It’s about time that someone abandoned the notion that compromise is the best way to win,” said Rev. Mark Morrow, the Williamsburg pastor who introduced Cruz, a freshman senator who was elected in 2012 with tea party backing.

Throughout his remarks, Cruz made clear he cares little for the approval of his colleagues in Washington, Republicans included.

"There are so many elected officials in both parties that desperately crave the adulation of the media and the intelligentsia,” he said.

Virginia’s Republican candidate for governor, attorney general Ken Cuccinelli, spoke earlier in the program, an appearance that had consumed the governor’s race all the week.
Democrats, betting that Cruz’s uncompromising behavior in Washington is toxic to moderate voters in a state whose economic health is tied to the federal government, have been working overtime to portray Cuccinelli as a close ally of Cruz.

His Democratic opponent in the governor’s race, Terry McAuliffe, has accused Cuccinelli of being Robin to Cruz’s Batman, even running a television ad this week saying that “Ted Cruz’s tea party shutdown is hurting Virginia.”

Cuccinelli, whose fortunes depend on turning out conservative base voters on Nov. 5, has been reluctant to criticize his fellow Republicans, including Cruz, over the shutdown.

But his aides have been at pains to put some distance between the Republican candidate and Cruz, noting that his appearance here was not an official campaign event, and that he and Cruz were invited separately to the gala.

Before the event, Cuccinelli and Cruz crossed paths and chatted briefly backstage. A Cuccinelli aide told reporters that Cuccinelli urged Cruz to find a solution to the shutdown.

During his brief remarks, Cuccinelli made no reference to Cruz, and he departed from the convention center soon after leaving the stage.

Cruz, though, lavished praise on Cuccinelli, who was the first state attorney general in the country to sue the federal government over the Affordable Care Act.

"Let me just say for a second how proud I am of my friend Ken Cuccinelli,” Cruz said. “He is smart, he is principled and he is fearless."

Filed under: Government Shutdown • Ken Cuccinelli • Ted Cruz
soundoff (1,025 Responses)
  1. Chedar

    Hey Dumb Cruz, the Affordable Care Act is a better win than Bush brought us two loosing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    October 6, 2013 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  2. Vader

    Sorry Ted. One more thing about which you are wrong.

    "...said Republicans would win the shutdown fight but OFFERED LITTLE IN THE WAY OF CONCRETE SOLUTIONS."

    And that is the crux of the problem; the Republicans have no alternative solution to offer to the growing problem with access to and the cost of health care beyond "No." They with no plan have no grounds for constructively criticizing those who do. Ted is speaking to the echo chamber.

    October 6, 2013 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  3. Mike v

    The GOPfather Saga:

    Representative John Boehner: I can get you a budget and a debt limit increase. The price is Obamacare, plus a monthly case of Bourbon. [sneers] Mr. Oh-Bah-Ma.
    President Obama: Now, the budget and debt limit are routinely passed. Is that right?
    Boehner: That's right.
    The President: So why would I ever consider paying anything?
    Boehner: Because I intend to squeeze you. I don't like your kind of people. I don't like to see you come out to lead this clean country with your oily hair, dressed up in those silk suits, passing yourselves off as decent Americans. I'll do business with you, but the fact is that I despise your masquerade, the dishonest way you pose yourself. Yourself and your whole f'ing family.
    The President: Representative. We're both part of the same hypocrisy...but never think it applies to my family.
    Boehner: [exasperated] Okay. Some people need to play little games. You play yours. Let's just say that you'll do what I say because it's in your interest to . But I want your answer and the Bourbon by noon tomorrow. And one more thing. Don't you contact me again, ever. From now on, you deal with Cruz.
    President Obama: Boehner? You can have my answer now, if you like. My offer is this: nothing. Not even the cost to the American people, which I would appreciate if you and your Party would pay for personally in 2014 and 2016.

    (End Scene)

    October 6, 2013 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  4. glorydays

    This is not a damn game.

    October 6, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  5. Dutch in IL

    Put a moustache under his nose and he would look a great deal like Adolf Hitler, woudn't he!.

    October 6, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  6. D. Clark

    A s a Republican I hope Obama care remains intact. The GOP is following the conservative edict. In this modern society there is no possible reason that every citizen should not have health care.

    October 6, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  7. Simon

    Cruz is worst than Binladen, him Boehner are terrorists and all GOP

    October 6, 2013 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  8. Toltec1

    There have been many laws I have not agreed with. Especially when I was younger. Myy elders always said, "If you don't like the law, we have a proper process to work for change. Remember we are a unified nation and you may not always get your way". Eventually I grew up and realized we had the best system in the world, flawed as it may be. I fear we are heading down a dangerous road by setting this dangerous precedent. Peace

    October 6, 2013 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  9. LibertisNotAnarchy

    This sort of reckless political brinkmanship hurts America far more than terrorism. We need leaders who can at least do their job and pass a budget.

    October 6, 2013 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  10. Larry

    If the GOP wins the American people lose – another victory for the Tealiban.

    October 6, 2013 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  11. silencedogood

    When Harry Reid responds to CNN that he wouldn't compromise to "save even one kid with cancer" who is the extremist and who is unwilling to compromise? Democrats.

    October 6, 2013 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  12. Dave Reeves

    Not worth reporting as a headline CNN. Mr. Cruz is running through the modern GOP playbook to obtain viable candidate status for 2016. He is currently appealing to the most extreme portion of the party to obtain their support. What he doesn't realize (and no one in the ballroom will tell) is that the majority of Americans view these theatrics/policies as harmful to our country. But back to CNN's reporting of this "news". It is clearly divisive and designed to incite. Shame on you CNN this could have been reported in a much more professional and informative manner.

    October 6, 2013 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  13. jerry bruno

    all you so called servers of the people know what a misspelled last name means. well I need say no more. and that from the top down

    October 6, 2013 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  14. Seriously

    This guy has been blocking the budget from going to conference since March- its in the congressional record. He, McConnell, Twoohey, and Rubio have stonewalled until a shutdown was unavoidable. To then have the gall to not claim responsibility? He's a saboteur and a traitor.

    October 6, 2013 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  15. Maureen

    Senator Cruz recently stated that UPS is dropping coverage for spouses and that is because of Obamacare. . Well that is partly correct, if the spouse has insurance offered through his or her employer then they can no longer be covered under UPS healthcare. This is nothing new, in fact, The Timken Company located in Canton,Ohio and owned by The Timken Family (Republicans) has implemented this very same policy years ago to the Salary and non-union associates.

    October 6, 2013 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  16. johnrf

    Cruz is a liar and a traitor to our nation. Only the most uninformed citizens would believe one word of this nonsense. Thanks to Cruz the Dems will take back the house and make gains in the senate.

    October 6, 2013 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  17. EdQ

    Stick to your guns Ted, stand your ground and drag the rest of the country down with you

    October 6, 2013 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  18. Doc

    It is all too obvious that many on the far right have no other endgame in mind except to grasp and hold power. The needs of the republic are being held hostage by a faction. The GOP leaders are going to be held liable for their unwillingness to form a more reasonable position. They need to read Federalist #10.

    October 6, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  19. Gunny

    Cruz is like the quarterback who refuses to leave the field after losing the big game. A game that was lost in the 2nd or 3rd quarter. Throwing yourself on the ground, kicking and screaming isn't going to change the score.

    Unfortunately for the American people (the fans) they aren't letting us leave the stadium until he gets himself under control.

    Just FYI, I am a lifelong Republican and retired military.

    October 6, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  20. Geoege Anderson

    Ted Cruz has no concern for the American people of {WE THE PEOPLE|. For Ted...This is all about him. He is narcissistic. He was elected to serve the people, not betray their trust. Cruz is a politician through and through. If he sleeps well at night; it is because he has no conscience. He has betrayed the public's trust & should resign immediately.

    October 6, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  21. Cat

    Down with the Tea Baggers and their GOP buddies. And to all of you who support them. You are losers as well!!!!

    October 6, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  22. PS

    Cruz, you are a slimebag and I'm ashamed of you – and I say that as someone who is conservative. I moved to TX a little over a year ago and as a whole I'm happy with being here, but you are a blight on an otherwise really nice state. There are good people here and all you care about is hurting them because of your self-interests, just like everywhere else in the country. Because of you contributing to a broken system and thinking there's nothing wrong with it – which in my mind makes you evil – I will be remembering your Tea Party antics along with that of my Congressman (who is also a Tea Party Republican) when you're up for election again.

    October 6, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  23. moondoggie601

    If it does not happen, will he just go away. The answer is NO, the money is too good.

    October 6, 2013 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  24. Amanda

    How sad. The GOP doesn't win. They're losing votes every day this goes on. I can't believe the elders in the party are allowing themselves to be hijacked like this.

    October 6, 2013 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  25. C.M. Bozorth

    McCarthy look-alike with politics to boot. I am reminded of 'Crazy Joe' and his antics against the elected government. Joe was brought to shame just as this creep will be too.

    October 6, 2013 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
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