At the end of last week, the House Republicans passed a continuing resolution (CR) with an amendment that would prohibit funds being used for Obamacare, understanding, of course, that the Democrats controlling the Senate would strip such defunding language from the bill. Tea Party Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas has said he would attempt to filibuster the bill if the Democrats follow through on their plan, which they will in all likelihood. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will have none of it, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell does not support the filibuster gambit either.
Senator Ted Cruz’s threats to filibuster puts Republicans in a tight place, since, if he were somehow able to succeed, the government would shutdown, and the public would likely blame the GOP, endangering the House majority. It’s enough to make any party leader bang his head against a brick wall repeatedly. It might be cold comfort, but at least the House Republican leadership can take solace from the fact that the current crop of legislators are an notably rowdy bunch.
And to get their house in order, perhaps the leaders can pass around the latest polling data, which shows the public actually says they want compromise.
And if the polling data is not enough to convince wayward Republicans, they could pass around a memo about how a shutdown would delay military pay.
Undercutting the military is rarely a good idea in American politics, especially as we draw closer and closer to Veterans Day. And there is some talk that the Senate Democrats might amend the CR to expire on November 15, just days after Veterans Day, rather than December 15, per the House’s version.