Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., is sick of hearing people talk about ObamaCare, and after Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, spent a grueling 21 hours and 19 minutes on his recent filibuster attempt, I’d be willing to bet that the majority of the Senate — and everyone who had nothing better to do on Wednesday than watch C-SPAN — are too.
Sen. Cruz was determined to convince Republicans to block an end to debate on the House spending bill, and in spite of a Senate that can’t seem to agree on anything, the motion passed 79-19. He attempted to persuade his more conservative colleagues by claiming that to vote in favor of the measure would be to vote in favor of funding the health care law, because ultimately, Reid would remove the defunding provision with a majority vote. Reid just wants those in vehement opposition to “get a life and talk about something else … people deserve better.”
Not only did Cruz fail to garner enough support for the fight to continue opposing ObamaCare, but he also managed to emphasize how divided the Republican Party is on such a hot-button issue.
Cruz made it clear that he was willing to do whatever it took, even if it meant temporarily shutting down the government. This incited anger in some of his senior counterparts, who didn’t agree with the risks he was taking. Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, made his thoughts on the matter clear, stating, “I just don’t believe anybody benefits from shutting the government down, and certainly Republicans don’t.”
Every elected official passes the time for their filibuster differently. Between claiming that the nation is a nightmare, doing his Darth Vader impression (yes, it is as bad as you imagine it would be) and reading passages from the Bible to his children, Cruz reads supportive messages from Twitter and talks about Duck Dynasty, White Castle, his dad, pig roasts at Christmas and Ashton Kutcher, which is likely a welcome reprieve from his crusade against ObamaCare. He also chastised his colleagues for not supporting him, in spite of having valid reasoning. Congressman Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., sums it up perfectly, deeming the 40 votes that the House has taken on the health care law to be “theatrics” and that “[they] keep doing it over and over and it doesn’t get anywhere.”
Everyone is entitled to their opinion about how the government should allocate its funds, but sometimes it’s necessary to take a step back and be pragmatic, especially if opinions are heavily based on non-factual information that floats around and spreads like wildfire. There are many people who oppose any government intervention in health care and who still think that the Affordable Care Act is an imposition on American citizenry — however, ObamaCare is not a socialist regime, nor is it in any way a stepping stone toward one.