October 21st, 2013
08:16 AM ET
9 years 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.

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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.

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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. Ronald

    We need to get rid of Cruz – he's a nut job

    October 21, 2013 08:23 am at 8:23 am |
  2. Dassem

    Vote GOP out in 2014, we regular people want our country back!

    October 21, 2013 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  3. JP Smith

    Perhaps if you really what to know the passion and opinion of people you poll would not ask questions with political bias. try asking Americans if they think the ACA or Obamacare should be postponed to allow time to fix its web site. Ask if Americans think Obamacare should apply to all Americans or if they think it is fine to exempt the President, Supreme Court, Congress, Muslims, Christian Scientists, Amish, American Indians .... Then apply those answers to where the parties stood on these issues and you would probably find that 70% side with the right. But your reporting has not been balanced or fair and your polling reflects your bias.

    October 21, 2013 08:32 am at 8:32 am |
  4. the hippies were right

    I'm so tired of this scum (and Boehner) using the phrase, "the American people". Cruz represents less than 20% of the people. His always saying "the American people" is obviously an attempt to fool the ignorant into believing his motives are popular with the majority. 2014 can't come soon enough. I can't wait for the day this egotistical low-life is laughed at by all and finally silenced.

    October 21, 2013 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
  5. cumulus

    The GOP staff infection, cut off whatever it takes to rid this man from your ranks, you will all pay if you dont

    October 21, 2013 08:37 am at 8:37 am |
  6. Wake up People!

    This guy is so delusional that it's pathetic. A first term Senator coming into the Senate trying to take over. It's like the new person at work coming in trying to tell the ones with experience what to do and how to do it. Personally I'm loving what Cruz is doing to the GOP. As much as the GOP brought this completely on themselves by embracing a bunch of bigots and racists, the decent part of me feels a little bad for them. They need to realize Willard lost in 2012, that means they are not in charge. It's time they faced the fact, the dude with the permanent tan is the POTUS and they need to respect him AND the office of President.

    October 21, 2013 08:45 am at 8:45 am |
  7. Rudy NYC

    Sen. Cruz is the one who's the RINO in the Republican Party. I seriously doubt if he's ever tried to sponsor a bill that did not repeal the ACA. Cruz did not go DC to govern. Governing is not even in the picture. He went to DC to seek out and destroy that which he does not like.

    Disagree? Can anyone out there tell me what Sen. Cruz is actually for? I've heard a lot of sound bites from Cruz. He's done a lot of TV interviews. All that he's ever publicly spoken about has been to villify 'Obamacare', and promise to destroy it. He's never spoke about any other topic that I can recall.

    October 21, 2013 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  8. A traveler

    Goodbye Ted. Good riddance.

    October 21, 2013 08:48 am at 8:48 am |
  9. A True Conservative

    The problem is that as long as the Washington politicians continue to provide free or reduced price "stuff" to the masses, the masses will keep voting for them – regardless of what it means for the Republic. We no longer think of the next generation – it's all me,me,me.......

    October 21, 2013 08:48 am at 8:48 am |
  10. pkrbkr03

    Senator Cruz is in his own little bubble.....Texas seems to elect some who cannot see the forest for the trees! I would think the people in that state would realize they are the "lone" with some of the people they send to Congress.

    October 21, 2013 08:48 am at 8:48 am |
  11. Poodlepuff

    Cruz and the GOP Republicans, all of them, are bad for America and bad for the future of this great country. As America falls further and further behind the rest of the world in economic competitiveness, education, and scientific development it also is perceived as an emerging third world backwater in societal terms. The irony is that this is in large measure the result of the GOP's singular obstructionist philosophy that any development must be objected to unless it solely benefits the top .5% of American society.

    October 21, 2013 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  12. Larry282

    How does this guy keep getting in the news? The media gives him a podium and he happily stands on it spouting crap and saying nothing! Time the media cut off his microphone and sent him back to Canada.

    October 21, 2013 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  13. wtf

    Cruz has a circle jerk with his "people" back home. Cleaning their guns and bating with their bibles.

    Doesn't he realize he lost? The people now know who and what you are. There is no I in team but there sure is an U in dou che.

    October 21, 2013 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  14. Doctor Fine

    Cruz is a destructive childish self serving Joe McCarthy type. He loves being in the spotlight and will be back in January to finish off America by destroying our credit worthiness.

    After we are standing in the ruins someone will have him arrested for his attack on America but by then it will be too late. He clearly is violating his oath to defend the Constitution by voiding the 14th Amendment. He is a national disgrace.

    October 21, 2013 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  15. pkrbkr03

    OOps! In the previous comment I neglected to mention Louis Gohmert as one of those from Texas that thinks he connects with the rest of the country...NOT! Another "lone" from the Lone Star State

    October 21, 2013 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  16. jinx9to88

    Cruz needs help. The hardest thing is to admit there is problem. I honestly thought the GOP would regain the White House in 2016 but I am not so sure if this keeps up.

    October 21, 2013 08:53 am at 8:53 am |
  17. RAWoD

    Ted is over - except in his own mind.

    October 21, 2013 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  18. Paul Clark

    Cruz is delusional. He and those radicals like him that think you can hold a nation hostage over a single issue are the problem. He amounts to a school bully and spoiled brat that can't get a long with anyone.

    I hope every single tea party Republican get's thrown out on their rear end come next election. Oh and I'm from Texas and don't vote party lines but I'm a registered Republican.

    October 21, 2013 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  19. GOP = Greed Over People

    Funny, the latest polls show that 54% of voters think the GOP should lose their HOUSE majority AND 64% think Boehner should be replaced as majority speaker.

    Perhaps a speaker Pelosi in 2014?

    Just keep ignoring the "liberally biased" polls and denying business statistics is not a science, but a "skewed" hoax perpetrated by universities to cause angst amongst us business college grads!

    October 21, 2013 08:58 am at 8:58 am |
  20. kmp

    Sen. Cruz those are probably the truest words you have spoken yet. And you my friend are the star of all that is wrong with the Republican Party.

    October 21, 2013 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  21. P. Hagdorn

    Ted Cruz is the problem, not the Senate GOP. He has only one thing on his mind, stop anything proposed by President Obama. Ted Cruz does NOT speak for America. He is willing to throw the American people under the bus, literally, just to stop health care reform. In 3 weeks the Shutdown cost $24 billion, far more than Obamacare. With another showdown coming in January, Americans should save their money this Christmas to survive the next time Ted Cruz puts them out of work.

    October 21, 2013 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  22. The Real Tom Paine

    If I talked about my co-workers the way this man talks about his Senate colleagues, I would be hauled into the HR office and written up, if not fired outright. His arrogance really knows no bounds. I can't wait to see how he gets marginalized over the next year until he comes crawling to his leadership, begging for forgiveness after he costs them the Senate ( again) and the House. When Rand Paul is quicker on the uptake than the du jour standard-bearer of the party, you know they are in trouble.

    October 21, 2013 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  23. Hector Slagg

    If someone can sell me on the "Benefit's" of allowing the Over 17 Trillion Federal debt to continue to run out of control I might buy the Liberal's plan. So far putting the brakes on the Federal Debt has been a disaster. The day is coming when the money has all run out with no plan except a return to the 1930's.

    October 21, 2013 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  24. blf83

    I love it when Republicans get snarky with each other.

    October 21, 2013 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  25. Tampa Tim

    Cruz is certifiable.

    October 21, 2013 09:03 am at 9:03 am |
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