October 21st, 2013
08:16 AM ET
1 year ago

Cruz: Senate Republicans are 'single-most damaging thing' for the GOP in 2014

(CNN) - If Republicans suffer losses in next year's mid-term elections because of the recent partial government shutdown, Sen. Ted Cruz said Senate Republicans–not Democrats–will be responsible.

"The single-most damaging thing that has happened to Republicans for 2014 is all of the Senate Republicans coming out, attacking the House Republicans, attacking those pushing the effort to defund Obamacare and lining themselves up opposite of the American people," Cruz told CNN Chief Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash in an interview in San Antonio.

His comments, which aired Monday on "New Day," come as a new CNN/ORC International survey indicates that more than half of the country is displeased with Republicans holding majority power in the House.

According to the poll, 54% say it's a bad thing that the GOP controls the House, up 11 points from last December, soon after the 2012 elections when the Republicans kept control of the chamber. Only 38% say it's a good thing the GOP controls the House, a 13-point dive from the end of last year.

Cruz to CNN: ‘I don’t work for the party bosses in Washington’

This is the first time since Republicans won back the House in the 2010 elections that a majority of people say GOP control of the chamber is bad for the country.

Cruz helped lead the conservative Republican strategy to attach anti-Obamacare provisions to must-pass spending legislation this fall. With the support of the White House, the Democratic-controlled Senate refused to take up anything that tried to dismantle the president's signature health care law.

Ultimately the disagreement led to the 16-day partial government shutdown, which removed $24 billion from the economy, according to an initial analysis from Standard & Poor's.

Republican shutdown pain may boost Dems in 2014

Many Senate Republicans rebuked the effort led by Cruz, a first-year senator who was elected in 2012, and they privately and publicly discouraged the senator from pursuing the tactic.

"It was a fool's errand to start with. It was never going to succeed," Sen. John McCain said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union."

McCain didn't single out Cruz but blamed "the whole effort" instead.

"Keep up the fight against Obamacare. But don't shut down the government and have so much collateral damage," the Arizona Republican added.

Some argue Cruz's strategy was taken in part to raise money for conservative groups that back primary challengers. One group, the Senate Conservatives Fund, which supported Cruz last year, raised $2.1 million in September–a large amount for a nonelection year.

McCain: Obamacare website rollout a 'fiasco'

Asked if his effort was a money-making enterprise, Cruz said: "Not remotely."

The Texas Republican said he's "hopeful" Senate Republicans will change.

"I am hopeful there will be some time, some reflection, and that Senate Republicans will come back. Come back to the principles they believe and they campaigned on. I'm hopeful we'll actually put action behind the campaign promises," he said.

In the Senate, Democrats hold 55 seats, including two independents who caucus with the Democrats, while Republicans hold 45. Democrats are defending 21 of the 35 seats up for grabs next year, with Republican defending 14.

– CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2014 • Congress • Ted Cruz
soundoff (827 Responses)
  1. dknicely

    Ted Cruz with his desired plutocracy driven oligarchy to replace our Democratic Republic is the problem, not moderate Republicans willing to reach acceptable compromises to keep our government open. It's time for referendum and get rid of this Koch Brothers' billionaire driven corruption within Tea Partiers. Vote them out to preserve what's left of halfway fair government policy.

    October 21, 2013 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  2. Boo

    Another conservative in denial......whatever...

    October 21, 2013 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  3. Grumpster

    Sorry, Ted....YOU are the problem. You are delusional at best, psychotic likely, and seditious for sure. You are like Ned Flanders on steroids and we do not need you in Government. Go away.

    October 21, 2013 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  4. bdby

    I think Cruz had the right strategy. It was the Republican senate that CHOKED when called to vote on defunding this disaster called Obama no care. Each and every one of those Rep senators have alot of explaining to do to their constituents. I wouldn't be surprise if the word "coward" would be brought up.

    Just my thoughts

    October 21, 2013 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  5. Gunderson

    Wow,
    Old Gunderson so amazed. See practically everyone post here use their own standards to Judge Ted Cruz. (No old Gunderson not amazed). Most of you behind door when brains passed out. But old Gunderson forgive, you know not what you do. Cutting own throat so painful! Florida Newspaper print Obama Care not bump in road, is big Sinkhole. Obama open Pandora's Box, run right into Murphy's Law. More (Bad News) to come.

    October 21, 2013 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  6. Lynda/Minnesota

    Whatever, Ted Cruz. Cruz (R-Canada) is now grasping at Sarah Palin menu-hopping, word-salad speakism talking points.
    Also too for a man reputed to be an intelligent debater this is a very bad political strategy.

    October 21, 2013 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  7. They call me joe.....

    Fight hard to keep Americans from getting healthcare but nothing on the foolish wars that we keep getting involved with? Whats wring with this picture?

    October 21, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  8. boston

    When you can't own up to your own failures – blame someone else.

    October 21, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  9. Horrible

    Those of you saying you love this guy for making Democrats look good, helping them, etc, or love him because you hate Republicans need a seriously wake-up call. This guy and people like him cost our economy 24 billion dollars that they're stating, guaranteed more due to consumers loss in confidence and investors. This doesn't help anyone, and as Americans you should be more concerned about the future of the nation than your respective parties being in power.

    October 21, 2013 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  10. iski

    Harvard has to be looking into what it takes to revoke a conferred degree. Who completed this guy's LSATs and law school assignments?

    October 21, 2013 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  11. oneWayfarer

    EVERYBODY hang on Every word of Sir Talks a Lot

    October 21, 2013 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  12. unretired05

    The single-most damaging thing that has happened to Republicans for 2014 is Ted Cruz.

    October 21, 2013 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  13. korkea aika

    Mr. Cruz is the problem. In fact, 'new americans' like Mr Cruz (born in Canada to Cuban parents) don't really get American pluralism. They tend to get fanatical about FREEDOM and take an extreme position on FREEDOM. Americans understand "Liberty" (a nuanced freedom). Mr Cruz is dangerous and likely to be ignored by his party after the very destructive path he just took them on. We need a strong, pluralistic Republican party to balance our politics. Mr Cruz and his ilk are not viable partners in our democracy.

    October 21, 2013 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  14. Sashatree

    Cruz is not mentally stable. He should be charged with sedition!

    October 21, 2013 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  15. MITCH

    I'm Canadian and I thought our politicians were delusional, narcissistic morons but Cruz has taken this to another level

    October 21, 2013 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  16. johnny

    One thing Texan can do is stop voting for him when his term is up. If you keep talking but no action..then it is meaning less. He is too extreme for the American people. He is present his state but not the whole country. He is self center and looking for attention.

    October 21, 2013 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  17. Larry in Houston

    don't worry – this nut case ain't gonna make it, for another election....I mean, the people down here won't put him through again...He's nothing but a loser.....

    October 21, 2013 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  18. Reagan

    I'm a republican and live in Texas. Cruz is insane. We apologize to the people of the US. Don't know how this idiot got through the process. We will try to correct the problem with the next election.

    October 21, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  19. Wake up People!

    Sorry Dallas, I'm sure you're not an idiot but the state that elects Rick Perry and Ted Cruz, just doesn't seem that bright.

    October 21, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  20. Uttam Saha

    This Canadian boy bringing America down and making him richer – he is making money - big time money.

    October 21, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  21. rdg18

    Over spending liberals are the problem. Cruz is just trying to stop it.

    October 21, 2013 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  22. julie

    .....I believe Sarah Palin started this clown show in 2008 republicans weren't this crazy coo coo before Sarah, guess the repub were waiting for someone like her to lead them into the krazy zone and they just fell in line and can't stop themselves

    That's why we must vote out all krazy koo koo's out in 2014 vote them all out the R & D's. we need fresh new blood in congress maybe candidates should take a Mental Capacity Test first it surely couldn't hurt

    October 21, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  23. GOP_R_Traitors

    This FAUX American, gives a Faux Filibuster that provided riches to him and his interests. He is totally disgusting. I want Obamacare as it is. We will see how it works, and tweak it later, as we do to ALL OTHER PROGRAMS.

    Debt is not a problem. He needs to literally be hung on the Capital steps for the traitor that he is.

    October 21, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  24. rs

    The Problem with the GOP is this: They went from being the party of the staus quo (i.e. resisting change) and fiscally moderate policies to the party of "Burn It Down". The folks calling anyone who voted against the default as RINOs ought to answer: How does destroying our current financial sysyem seem in any way "conservative" to you?.
    The GOP started down this path in the '80s when they decided to run on the idea that government was a problem. Thoughtout the 90s that evolved into government equating badness, to now where government is broken and evil (and to prove it the GOP- in people like Cruz) aactively work to break government so they can say "see- all bad".
    The problem is along the way they lost that fiscal conservatism. They wring their hands and moan about the debt- but how did that get built? By going to war on two different fronts and not only did they not raise taxes to pay for those wars (has been done for every other war), they actually cut taxes!.
    Now they protest social spending by blowing $24 billion holes into the budget with senseless shutdowns.

    The GOP has little credibility. The GOP has NO fiscal credibility.

    October 21, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  25. Democracy

    Ted Cruz like the Tea party forgets that we live in a democracy and that the Tea Party only represents districts that make up no more than 20% of the US population. The shut down was caused by the GOP's current undemocratic party system of putting representatives in key committee positions that do not think like the other 80% of Americans, who are made up of rational thinking Republicans and Democrats. Mr. Cruz, take your form of representation back to where you were born: Calgery, Canada

    October 21, 2013 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
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