Feature

Cruz’s gleeful sabotage of the GOP

With friends like Sen. Ted Cruz, other Republicans do not need enemies.

Dana MilbankThe Washington Post

With friends like Sen. Ted Cruz, said Dana Milbank, other Republicans do not need enemies. The Tea Party darling from Texas stabbed fellow Republicans in the back last week by staging a reckless filibuster of a bill that raised the nation’s debt limit. The filibuster was a pure “ego trip”—a delivery of red meat to the party’s rabid, talk-radio base—and had it succeeded, the federal government would have defaulted on its debts, causing the stock market to panic and the “economy to swoon.” With “a satisfied grin on his face,” Cruz watched as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, and 10 other livid Republicans were forced to cast votes to break the filibuster—and thus increase the debt limit. Those responsible votes may cause Republicans to lose their Senate seats to Tea Party challengers in primaries. And if Tea Party extremists win those primaries, they’re likely to lose general elections to Democrats, thus keeping the Senate in Democratic hands. The smirking Cruz, of course, couldn’t care less; his own career—and 2016 presidential aspirations—are all that matters.

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