Updated 10/22/2013 at 1:48pm
(CNN) – Sen. Ted Cruz was greeted by a screaming crowd of supporters and cheers of "Thank you Ted!" and "Welcome Home!" Monday night in Texas.
The freshman senator said he was happy to be back home in Houston, and wasn't afraid to be honest about his feelings on Washington.
"It is terrific to be back in America," said Cruz as supporters waved homemade signs promoting "#MakeDCListen," a hashtag that was a prominent part of Cruz's 21-hour speech on the Senate floor in late September.
In the opinion of many on Capitol Hill, Democrats and Republicans, that speech was the kick-off of an irresponsible and destructive campaign to defund Obamacare at the risk of all else.
With the White House and Congress unable to settle their budgetary differences, the federal government was partially shut down for more than two weeks, and came very close to running out of money to pay its bills.
Cruz's colleagues in the Senate didn't stay quiet. "It was a fool's errand to start with. It was never going to succeed," Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union."
On CBS's "Face the Nation," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, said, "Shutting down the government, in my view, is not conservative policy."
Back in Texas, Cruz was quick to admit that he had made some enemies when he told the crowd a story about his two young daughters.
Catherine had announced at a family outing that she wanted to grow up to work in the Senate "like daddy." However, Cruz's other daughter, Caroline, immediately dismissed that as "boring." She also pointed out the fact that "by then daddy will be dead anyways."
Cruz went on to say, "I kind of wondered if Caroline had been talking to Republican leadership in Washington, if she knew something I didn't know."
If this isn't evidence enough that Cruz isn't too concerned with the "voices in Washington," when asked whether he was hoping to repair his relationships with Republican leaders, Cruz laughed. "I don't work for the party bosses in Washington. I work for 26 million Texans."
Ted Cruz won't rule out another shutdown, aide tells CNN
Cruz had some fun with the problems plaguing HealthCare.gov as well, saying, "the Nigerian e-mail scammers" had been hired to run the site.
The senator also had some harsh words, laying the blame for "a lousy deal" squarely at the feet of the Senate Republicans who didn't "unite with House Republicans."
The deal that ended the shutdown and raised the debt ceiling was passed with 87 House Republicans joining 197 Democrats to vote 'Yea' and 144 Republicans voting 'Nay.'
"We didn't ultimately win this battle," said Cruz. "But listen, no one in this room started this fight thinking it would be easy. We all knew that if we took on the Washington establishment the establishment would fight back."
Cruz assured the crowd that the past two months had seen enormous progress and that if they "follow the model" of grass-roots campaigns and citizen engagement they would "change the debate" in Washington.
Movements such as the constituent support of Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul's filibuster on drones, and the backlash against gun control legislation after the shooting in Newtown, Cruz said, were evidence of effective campaigns Democrats and the White House were forced to listen to.
Cruz said the message of the rally was clear: Texans and the American people don't want Obamacare and they're fed up with Congress.
But for all his talk of blowing off the party bosses, Cruz acknowledged that success for the Republicans lay with a unified message.
"I'm hopeful, with a little bit of time and reflection, that Senate Republicans will decide to come together again," Cruz said.
"I would love to see Republican unity, to see all of us stand together against this train wreck that is Obamacare and with the American people."
We've had people like this before they come and go. His 15 minutes of fame is almost up then he can join the likes of Sarah Palin.
Here's my question: what makes this guy a conservative? Trying to demolish the US government is the most radical political agenda imaginable. Let's at least call him what he is: an anarchist.
You hear these people complain that their insurance was canceled but the never post proof. Like the letter from the insurance company telling they policy will not be renewed or that it has been canceled.
Mr. Cruz, you do NOT represent ALL Americans. You are the "Kanye" of the government ... so full of yourself it's scary. The polls being taken are reflective of Americans ... all of them, the ones you try to ignore. You are out of control Mr. Cruz. Get some serious counseling!
Cruz does not represent America, he doesn't even represent 26 million Texans. What he does represent is the desire to build a war-pot and to get reelected by a bunch of egomaniacal foo-pahs!!!!!!
Texas deserves better.
Honestly, we don't know who this guy is in Texas or why he keeps affiliating himself with our state. He just shows up from Canada one day and all of sudden he's our senator? Don't blame Texas on this one, I think the GOP have gotten very proficient at hijacking the voting precincts and disenfranchising our voters in Texas.
Boy is he angling for a spot on FOX. Heard that he has approached FOX's big boys about a spot. He sure would fit right in with the ding bats there. Also, he sure is brazen to say the rest of the country is not American when he is not one- born in Canada!!
@hippies were right,
"WAIT!!!! Let me leave first!!!!"
Are you in Texas? What's a hippie doing in Texas! - unless you're in the Greater Austin Area, of course.
Anyway, it's Cruz and his supporters that are the enemy, not Texans in general. Not everyone in Texas loves Ted Cruz.
Watch out Hospitalists, these idiots are charging patients, hospital facilities, insurance guys–wake med. is getting sued. Do not put up. So are other hospitals in North Carolina.
You don't work for the Texans .. We know Texas is home to Americas largest medical discount and insurance companies.
You must not rest until you've caused the complete collapse of the world economy.
Only when this country lies in ruins can the Tea Party rest. After all, nothing shows patriotism like destroying your country's economy and ruining economic recoveries.
You are out of touch and scary. I hope you don't get re-elected.
@ kelly williams
You are saying this country is broke, well glad to inform you that it was the republicans who broke this country, i am getting tired of addressing ignorance on this post.
Cruz Palin 2016 – "We're so dumb that we will make anyone feel smart"
The second most arrogant politician in government after Obama. They should both resign and leave America alone.
"Party Boss" is incompatible with a democracy/republic.
Ted Cruz is an embarrassment to the Republican Party, and a stain on the Great State of Texas.
Ted Cruz, I would love to see you be the Senator McCarthy of our time. We will have to endure you, but in the end you will be a discredited politician who hangs his head in shame.
You don't represent me, and Texas isn't "America". Please Texas sucede from the union and do us all a favor. But give us back the roads and everything else we built with Govmt money first.
Wake up People!
The Nigerian e-mail scammers?? Really Ted? Gotta keep your base of bigots happy.
Don't forget "It is good to be back in America".
What do you think the chances are that there were ANY black or brown people in that crowd?
The same dog whistles, the same script that Sarah Palin used to blunder through are now being delivered by this polished, Harvard-graduate no less, latest Tea Party messiah. But they are both one and the same. Intent on creating division within our country, breaking the government to prove that it is broken while personally profiting from their efforts.
You gotta watch Cruz. He is not passionate like Sister Sarah, he doesn't believe any of this stuff. What he does believe in is doing what he is told to do by his real bosses – Koch brothers, Heritage Foundation- delivering with aplomb, and getting paid.
Well, this will be this bat crazy person's Alamo. Only this time, he won't be a hero.
@jon Wyatt, I work and volunteer with dog/cat rescue groups and the animal control shelter in my county in MD.
The doc catchers I know have more compassion and try to help the animals, including a no kill shelter and placing animals in a better environment in foster homes where they don't have to be penned up.
little Rafael bin laden, America's newest terrorist, wouldn't be fit for this type of work except to put him in a cage.
When a fake filibuster reading "Green Eggs and Ham" is considered by Cruz' fans as a profile in courage, you know there's a vacuum between their ears.
A minor senator, joined by a minority to go against the happy majority. What a person doesn't do to gain popularity!!
Time to abolish the republican party.