Sen. Saxby Chambliss said Wednesday that Sen. Ted Cruz’s filibuster of Obamacare is taking attention away from the Senate Democrats who are going to have to cast another controversial vote on the deeply flawed law that could threaten their re-election.
“He feels passionate about this, and I understand that, and he wants to get a message out,” Mr Chambliss, Georgia Republican, said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
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But, he said, that “instead of focusing on what politically makes sense, which is these Democrats who now are going to have to cast a vote again for the worst piece of legislation that I have seen in my 20 years here, all the focus is on Ted Cruz.”
Republicans have been trying to draw attention to the fact that some of the most vulnerable Democrats in the upper chamber are going to have to cast votes that could dog them in the 2014 election.
The list includes Democratic Sens. Mark L. Pryor of Arkansas, Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana, Mark Begich of Alaska and Kay R. Hagan of North Carolina.
Mrs. Landrieu, Mr. Begich and Mrs. Hagan have indicated they still support Obamacare roughly four years after they helped pass it out of the Senate.
Mr. Cruz is pressuring his colleagues to oppose limiting debate on a stopgap spending bill that passed the House and also defunds Obamacare. But many Republicans, including Mr. Chambliss, have signaled that they will go against Mr. Cruz’s wishes and vote along with Democrats to proceed with the stopgap bill because it contains the defunding provision.
“I’m going to vote to defund Obamacare,” Mr. Chambliss said.
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Mr. Cruz said that will pave the way for Senate Democrats to restore funding for Obamacare.
Mr. Chambliss is not seeking re-election in 2014.