Ted Cruz wants to blame Democrats for a government shutdown in 2017

The chief culprit of the 2013 government shutdown is preemptively angry at Democrats for allegedly considering one

By Matthew Rozsa
April 18, 2017 3:30PM (UTC)
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(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas may have been the primary culprit behind the 2013 government shutdown, but that doesn't mean he likes the idea of Senate Democrats doing the exact same thing.

After a town hall meeting at an air conditioner manufacturing plant in Waller County, Texas, Cruz told reporters that "you know, I very much hope we don't have a shutdown. I will say I’m concerned. I think [Senate Minority Leader] Chuck Schumer and the Democrats want a shutdown."


He added: "You know, one of the dynamics we’ve got is the Democratic radical left is demanding of Senate Democrats that they oppose everything, that they engage in across-the-board obstruction. And so I do have some concern that to appease the radical left, Chuck Schumer and the Democrats may do everything they can to try to provoke a shutdown."

Cruz also attempted to explain why the Republicans' repeal-and-replace bill for Obamacare failed to pass and how the next item on the Republicans' agenda, tax reform, could be more successful.

"What needs to occur with tax reform is sadly what didn’t happen on the front end with Obamacare repeal," Cruz said, noting that the American Health Care Act was "drafted behind closed doors, was sprung on the world and then the view of leadership was that no meaningful changes would be made and anyone who opposed would simply beaten into submission. I don't think that's how you get people to yes."


When conservative talk show host Sean Hannity asked Cruz to justify the 2013 government shutdown during a 2015 interview, Cruz said that the failure of other Republicans to support him was "not a question of letting me down. It’s a question of letting down the people who elected us. Republicans all over the country campaigned saying, if you elect us, we’ll fight."

Apparently Cruz does not apply that same principle to the Democrats who believe they should resist Trump.

Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer for Salon. He holds an MA in History from Rutgers University-Newark and is ABD in his PhD program in History at Lehigh University. His work has appeared in Mic, Quartz and MSNBC.

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Democratic Party Donald Trump Government Shutdown Ted Cruz