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Ted Cruz: 'Graham and Cassidy Don't Have My Vote, and They Don't Have Mike Lee's Either'

In what probably comes as a great shock to the establishment (it shouldn't, but somehow the establishment is always surprised when someone doesn't toe the line), Texas Senator Ted Cruz says that he and Senator Mike Lee do not support the Graham/Cassidy healthcare bill.

"Right now, they don’t have my vote and I don't think they have Mike Lee’s vote either," Cruz said during a panel discussion at the Texas Tribune Festival in Austin.

He also suggested he is open to supporting the bill eventually but only if certain changes to it are made. What changes those are, exactly, he didn't explain.

My best guess? They'll have to fix the fact that this bill spends 90 percent of what the U.S. government is currently spending on ObamaCare. In other words, as Rand Paul recently put it, Graham and Cassidy can count on Cruz's support if they write a bill that would actually replace ObamaCare, not change a few words in the fine print.

Here's what Senator Paul said last week:

In all ways, this bill is also ObamaCare Lite. In no way is it repeal the way we promised. I will oppose this bill as I did the other fake repeal bills, and I urge those who want repeal to do so, as well.

Graham/Cassidy doesn’t repeal a single ObamaCare insurance regulation. All of the Title 1 rules, the Essential Health Benefit rules, all of them - they’re still in place here.

States may grovel on bended knee for some relief to the federal government, with no guarantee of success and no permanent solution beyond the current administration.

Apparently, Ted Cruz agrees with his fellow senator.

Good.

As for those who "tentatively supported" Graham/Cassidy (mostly because some conservative radio talk show hosts told them to), as I wrote on Facebook:

Put that in your pipe and smoke it, fake "principled" conservatives. You're either in favor of the free market and opposed to socialized medicine, or you're an opportunist who just supports whatever it is your supposed "side' is pushing at the moment. You can't have it both ways.

No, there's no need for explanations that the "deadline" is fake news, that there are other ways of passing the bill, and that Republicans lied to conservatives by first agreeing to certain amendments only to yank them later on. You could've seen that coming from miles away. I could. And I don't even live on your side of the Atlantic.