Conventional wisdom has concluded that the government shut down caused by Sen. Ted Cruz’s campaign to defund Obamacare in the fall of 2013 was a failure. But Cruz would beg to differ. According to a Saturday story in the Washington Post, Cruz told an audience at the Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans that the campaign was a success.
Cruz’s reasoning is that even though he failed to defund Obamacare and that the shutdown failed, he still won by highlighting the inherent problems inherent in the health care law. Cruz’s campaign and the attending shutdown took place before the well-publicized failures with the Obamacare signup website and the spectacle of people being involuntarily thrown off of their health insurance and forced to accept often inferior policies under the Obamacare exchanges. Cruz is thus attempting to recast himself as the hero of the shutdown battle, trying to stave off the health care disaster that American thus faces.
Cruz has also suggested that the Democrats are really responsible for the government shutdown. Here is logic is unconventional, but nevertheless impeccable. Had the Democrats had seen the sense of Cruz’s supposition, that Obamacare was a disaster in the making, then they would have voted to defund the health care law and the shutdown would have been averted.
In any case Cruz also suggested that the electoral advantage that many analysis see for the Republicans in the 2014 midterms was a result of his fight against Obamacare, His reasoning stems from the idea that the effort placed Republicans, at least of the more conservative, tea party variety, squarely on the side against Obamacare, thus making the case for electing more of them in November. On the other hand many more establishment, moderate Republicans voted to pass funding for Obamacare on the idea that Cruz’s fight was unwinnable. Cruz replies that one battle does not constitute a war.