Sen. Cruz, I Can't Support You on This 'Defund' Strategy
I love Sen. Ted Cruz. I'm a huge fan of Sen. Rand Paul as well. I'm not one who cozies up with establishment Republicans. In fact, I find – at times – moderate Republicans to be more spineless than liberals. Nevertheless, this doesn't mean I need to agree with everything the Tea Party does concerning fighting Obamacare. We're heading for rocky shoals with this defund effort, and we can kill this massive federal power grab if we delay the individual mandate.
As we speak, Sen. Cruz is speaking about his opposition to Obamacare. He'll be going on for a while about this subject. Yet, it's not a real filibuster. Democrats have the sixty votes for cloture. They have a vote set for Wednesday. This will be the definition of anti-climatic.
As Byron York of the Washington Examiner noted on September 19:
Senate rules, which Reid will enforce, will limit the debate on the measure to 30 hours, divided evenly between the parties. That gives Republicans 15 hours, to be divided between 46 GOP senators. That's not a lot of time. It's possible the Republican caucus could decide to allow Cruz to filibuster for an extended period of time. But it's unlikely, given the other senators who will likely want to speak out on the issue. In March, the Rand Paul filibuster went on for nearly 13 hours; don't look for something like that to happen this time.
So Republicans don't have the votes to actually filibuster a continuing resolution, and they don't have the rules on their side to stage a talking filibuster. Supporters of defunding are bound to be disappointed. But the Senate aide says no one should be surprised. "This is not a gimmick or a scheme," says the aide. "It is Rule 22 of the U.S. Senate. Everybody knew this. This is an existing rule. It is taught in Senate class when you do your orientation. It is not a surprise. Nobody sprung it on him [Sen. Cruz]."
Guy Benson at Townhall had a good piece on how "winning elections is the only way Obamacare will ever be dismantled."