Ted Cruz Will Force Some Republicans to Vote Yes on Debt Ceiling

That is, if the Senate wants to pass a bill.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) addresses the Heritage Action for America's Conservative Policy Summit February 10, 2014 in Washington, DC.
National Journal
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Elahe Izad
Feb. 11, 2014, 11:08 a.m.

Sen. Ted Cruz is about to make life a little more dif­fi­cult for his Re­pub­lic­an “friends.”

The Texas Re­pub­lic­an plans to ob­ject to a simple-ma­jor­ity, up-or-down vote on the debt ceil­ing, his of­fice con­firms. The clean debt-ceil­ing bill will then need 60 votes to pass the Sen­ate, mean­ing at least five Re­pub­lic­ans will have to join the en­tire Demo­crat­ic caucus for it to pass.

Much of the saga over the debt ceil­ing has played out in the Re­pub­lic­an con­trolled-House. But the Sen­ate may not be without its own bit of drama. An aye vote on the debt-ceil­ing in­crease isn’t ex­actly one that Re­pub­lic­ans, even mod­er­ate ones, are itch­ing to cast. And now Cruz, largely looked to as the ar­chi­tect be­hind the strategy that led to the gov­ern­ment shut­down, will be the one to force them in­to that po­s­i­tion.

“I don’t know if there are any Re­pub­lic­ans who want to vote a clean debt lim­it,” Re­pub­lic­an Sen. John Thune said. “Un­til we re­ceive it from the House and fig­ure out what some of our mem­bers may or may not do, it’s hard to sort of spec­u­late about what those out­comes might be.”

Sen­ate Ma­jor­ity Lead­er Harry Re­id told re­port­ers that if the House passes a clean bill Tues­day even­ing, “I am con­fid­ent we will move over here as quickly as we can. But I put noth­ing past the tea-party-driv­en Re­pub­lic­an con­fer­ence.”

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