Appearing on the Fox News show "Fox News Sunday" this past weekend, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) threatened the Senate majority leader, Sen. Harry Reid with a possible shut down of the U.S. military as a last resort to defund "Obamacare."
“I'll tell you, any vote for cloture, any vote to allow Harry Reid to add funding for ObamaCare with just a 51-vote threshold, a vote for cloture is a vote for ObamaCare. And I think Senate Republicans are going to stand side by side with Speaker Boehner and House Republicans listening to the people and stopping this train wreck that is ObamaCare.”
When asked by Fox News host Chris Wallace what Republicans would do if Democrats did pass a budget that included funding for "Obamacare," Cruz threatened Harry Reid and the Democrats with a shut down of the military.
"Listen, if that happens -- if Harry Reid kills this bill in it the Senate, I think the House should hold its ground, and should begin passing smaller resolutions one department at a time. It should start, continuing resolution focused on the military -- fund the military, send it over, and let's see it Harry Reid is willing to shut down the military because he wants to force ObamaCare on the American people. I think that would be a very perilous decision for Harry Reid to make and if the House can keep driving this -- look, the House is the only body where the Republicans have a majority and so the House has to lead on this."
Cruz and other Republicans seem fully prepared to shut down the government if it means defunding the Affordable Care Act, but they aren't on the same page of most Americans. According to a new poll by CNBC, nearly 60 percent of the American people are against defunding "Obamacare" if it also means shutting down the government. Only 19 percent side with Cruz while 22 percent are not sure. The results were clearly partisan, with those who identify as "Tea Party" voting in favor of a shut down of the government at 65 percent.
As the threat of a government shut down becomes more of a reality by the day, President Obama and other Democrats are going to find a way to work out a deal with Republicans, no matter how bad the deal might be. Tea Party members have worked their way into the power chair of the GOP and unless House speaker John Boehner can act as a real leader, the president will have an even tougher fight on his hands.