Several House members are backing up Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and his leadership role in the effort to defund Obamacare in the wake of attacks from the mainstream media and anonymous statements from establishment Republicans and their staffers.
“I do feel obligated to speak because Senator Cruz is my senator and I endorsed him last year in his election against Lt. Gov. [David] Dewhurst,” Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX) said in response to a question from Breitbart News at Thursday’s Conversations with Conservatives press event on Capitol Hill. “We wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for his vision and his leadership,” he explained. “We are grateful for the fact that we are here today with this opportunity to deliver for the American people. We hope that the American people will help the Senate understand the enormous task that is in front of us.”
Rep. Raul Labrador (R-ID) added that Republicans are united in their push to defund Obamacare in the Continuing Resolution (CR). Labrado said he believes it is a “mistake” for some anonymous Republicans to suggest Cruz is somehow splitting the Party.
“Anonymous members and anonymous aides accusing other people of dividing the Republican Party?” Labrador said in response to Breitbart News’ question. “I think that’s a mistake. I think we’re behind this move.”
“I think you’re going to see a huge number of members, in fact, I almost believe that it’s going to be unanimous with the Republican members in the House,” he ventured. “I don’t think we’ve ever been this unified.”
Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC) said Cruz and Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), along with House conservative leaders like Reps. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA), deserve credit for helping unite the Republican Party around the effort to defund Obamacare. He said the American people also deserve credit for rising up and demanding their lawmakers fight for them.
“I’ll just echo that the Senators are getting credit and Tom Graves and Jim Jordan and others for helping get us to this point,” Duncan said. “They all deserve credit. But I’ll tell you what: The involvement of the American people cannot be ignored in this. Their voices were heard.”
“They made phone calls to our offices. They came to a rally here in Washington. They made personal contact during August at town halls,” he continued.” The American people got engaged and so I don’t want to discount them at all and I actually want to give them all the credit for getting us where we are today on this.”
Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL) argued that the current debate is the result of the American people wanting leaders in Congress like Cruz to stand up and defund Obamacare.
“Republicans are always blamed for defunding Obamacare and this is like 30 or 40 times we’ve done that,” Yoho said. “We’re not doing it because we want to do it. It’s because the American people have spoken up and said we want this thing done and if you go back to 2009 when the infamous words were ‘we have to pass it to see what’s in it. We have to pass it to see how it’s going to work.'”
“You’re seeing now what’s coming out and the American people don’t want it. American business said ‘no we don’t want it.’ The unions are saying ‘no we don’t want it.’ So I think the people have spoken loud and clear and I’m proud to be on this team in the 113th Congress where we’ve said we’re going to do this for the American people,” he stated. “This is what’s right for our country. This is what’s going to stimulate our economy by creating jobs and getting rid of this.”
Later on Thursday on a conference call with Cruz and conservative media, Reps. Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ) and Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-OK) also signaled their thanks and support for Cruz.
“It’s an honor to be on the phone with Sen. Cruz, and I think we have Jim Bridenstine on the call with us too, another great patriot,” Salmon said. “I just want to thank the leadership in the Senate of Sen. Cruz and Sen. Mike Lee.”
“It’s been interesting to watch this debate develop,” Bridenstine added. “It started off when this debate first started and Sen. Ted Cruz and Sen. Mike Lee have been doing the Lord’s work on this effort.”