In November, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) told a crowd not made up of Tea Partiers that he didn’t want a government shutdown — and they laughed.
On ABC’s This Week, the senator made the same point and even Jon Karl — a journalist who was nurtured by the conservative movement — didn’t buy it.
“You have had a couple of months to think about this whole government shutdown strategy,” Karl said. “Now that it’s over in hindsight, are you prepared to say that it was a mistake, it wasn’t the right tactic?”
“I think it was absolutely a mistake for President Obama and Harry Reid to force a government shutdown,” Cruz said.
“No, I mean, but come on,” Karl said.
Cruz’s argument rests on the fact that demanding the president defund his signature legislative accomplishment less than a year after that president was re-elected by a margin of millions of votes was a reasonable demand. And the president should have rewarded Republicans for shutting down the government over that demand. Even the Republican leadership in the House didn’t buy that argument, as Speaker John Boehner pointed out before the shutdown and after it — yet he still went along with the strategy.
In the same interview with Karl, Cruz insisted he doesn’t play politics.
Meanwhile he’s made several trips to states crucial to winning the 2016 GOP presidential nomination and is now attempting to renounce his Canadian citizenship.
The senator may find that it will actually be easier to qualify to run for president than to remove his Canadian birthright from his record.