The House quietly voted to raise the debt limit this week and it signals that at least some of the right-wing extremists realize they need to avoid more lose-lose situations no matter what their die-hard convictions. Creating false emergencies over the economy of the United States and watching the Stock Market fall isn't a good idea in an election year. But apparently Senator Ted Cruz didn't get the memo, and immediately vowed to filibuster the whole thing again. His rabble-rousing in the Senate created drama yesterday when suddenly there weren't enough votes to pass what should have been a no-brainer vote to raise the debt limit.
In the end, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was pushed by his own right-wing contingency to vote "Aye" on the Debt Limit bill, creating a no-win situation for him. This year he is facing not only a Tea Party opponent in the Kentucky Republican Primary, but also a really strong threat in Alison Lundergan Grimes, his Democratic adversary. He has to appeal to the independents in order to save his bacon, but the Tea Party doesn't care about that - they see him as a RINO (Republican in Name Only) because very occasionally he shows signs of sanity. So of course they jumped on him when this vote came down.
According to this video paid for by Jim DeMint's Heritage Foundation, all this bipartisanship just shows that McConnell is a damned librul' BULLY, just like the IRS and Obama. How dare he expect that Senate Conservatives would ever vote for something that might help the country!
How Mitch McConnell ended up taking his own self hostage http://t.co/YT3psD8EHm— Brian Beutler (@brianbeutler) February 13, 2014
McConnell voted to break filibuster on debt limit and colonial costumes and fife and drum sets just sold out in Kentucky.— pourmecoffee (@pourmecoffee) February 12, 2014
Ted Cruz Did Democrats a Big Favor Today That May Cost Mitch McConnell His Senate Seat http://t.co/6P46AV0goS— Rick Cooley (@rcooley123) February 13, 2014
From the New Yorker
There was a rare outbreak of sanity in the Grand Old Party on Tuesday, when Speaker John Boehner and a group of his allies joined with the Democrats to approve a raise in the debt ceiling without any preconditions, thereby avoiding the risk of the United States defaulting on its financial obligations. Never fear, though: the outbreak has been contained, and there doesn’t seem to be any danger of contagion.
By Wednesday morning, Senator Ted Cruz, the Texan firebrand, appeared to threaten to filibuster a Senate vote on the debt ceiling, and the Tea Partiers, gold bugs, Randians, birthers, anti-government bootboys, and other assorted wing nuts that make up a big part of the party’s base were happily ranting on about Boehner’s perfidy. If there’s one thing your typical Republican activist likes more than berating President Obama and the Democrats it’s attacking traitors and yellowbellies in his (or her) own ranks, and, once again, the long-suffering Speaker of the House is the primary target.
The drama came as the Senate began consideration of a suspension of the federal borrowing limit. The tension was not on the debt-ceiling vote itself, but on a procedural move that requires 60 senators to vote yes. That meant the chamber’s 55 Democrats needed five Republicans to move forward.
But who would the five Republicans be?
That question was apparently not answered in advance, and it ended up being settled out in the open, on the Senate floor.
. . . Before long, the doors to the Republican cloakroom swung open and a phalanx of Republicans marched down the aisle to the well of the Senate to switch their votes to Yes, including Sens. John Thune of South Dakota, John McCain of Arizona, Jeff Flake of Arizona and Orrin Hatch of Utah.
The tally hit 67. Mr. McConnell shook hands with Ms. Murkowski. Mr. Hatch hugged Sen. Susan Collins (R., Maine), who had also voted “yes.” Relief spread as the risk of a market-rattling defeat of the bill lifted.
It should have been a very easy vote. In my view every Senate Republican should have stood together and said what every single one of us tells our constituents back home, which is that we will not go along with raising the debt ceiling while doing nothing to fix the underlying out of control spending problem.
~ Senator Ted Cruz R-Texas
Kentucky and America can literally no longer afford such financially reckless behavior from the likes of Mitch McConnell.
~ Matt Bevin, McConnell's GOP opponent in Kentucky Senate race
GOP Tea Party Anger Directed at Mitch:
"Ditch McConnell is a special brand of traitor. He actually cast the deciding vote to end the filibuster, when... http://t.co/CNr3NYtiSv— Voices of Reason (@TasteTheLiberty) February 13, 2014
@marklevinshow I see Mitch McConnell voted with the DemonRats. Long past time for him to go.— PatriotInk (@Patriot_Ink) February 13, 2014
@McConnellPress Voters should never forget RINO Mitch McConnell's stunt at Wednesday's debt ceiling vote. Shame on him. Vote him out!— Anonymous583 (@Anonymous583) February 13, 2014