Ted Cruz: We Should Shut Down Government if Necessary to De-Fund Planned Parenthood

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 4, 2015   |   3:33PM   |   Washington, DC

Yesterday, Senate Democrats defeated an effort to revoke taxpayer funding for the Planned Parenthood abortion business by filibustering the bill and preventing a vote on it. Republicans were unable to secure the 60 voted needed to invoke cloture and stop debate on the bill, allowing an up or down vote.

The Senate voted 53-46 on the cloture motion — failing to get the 60 votes needed to stop the Democratic filibuster against the de-funding measure.

Now, some Republicans are saying the House and Senate should look at the possibility of shutting down the federal government in order to de-fund Planned Parenthood. But citing how President Barack Obama would merely veto a federal spending bill with Planned Parenthood de-funding language attached and saying that de-funding the government might hurt Republican election efforts next year in a crucial race against Hillary Clinton, other Republicans say that’s not a good idea.

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Senator Ted Cruz is one of the government shutdown proponents.

“I believe we should use every and any procedural tool available to defund Planned Parenthood,” he says.

Asked if it would be worth shutting down the government over Planned Parenthood’s $528 million a year in federal funding, Cruz shifted the focus to Democrats.

“I think that is an excellent question for you to ask every Democrat, if they’re willing to try to shut down the government in order to force continued taxpayer funding for an organization that has now been caught on film apparently repeatedly admitting to multiple felonies in buying and selling body parts in direct contravention of federal criminal law,” Cruz said.

Some Republicans who strongly support de-funding think blame for any government shutdown should be on Democrats who blocked the de-funding bill.

“First of all, I don’t know how anyone can continue to justify funding an organization that’s been exposed the way it has,” Marco Rubio said. “I don’t think you need to shut down the government to do that. I think the question you should be asking is of the Democrats: Are you willing to shut down the government in order to defend Planned Parenthood as opposed to us being asked that way?”

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“I support any legislation that will defund Planned Parenthood. But I don’t think you start out with your objective to shut down government. I mean, if President Obama wants to shut down government because he doesn’t get funds for Planned Parenthood, that would be President Obama’s determination to shut down government,” Rand Paul added.

But other pro-life Republicans disagree.

“I would urge that we not include that [funding] in the bill,” Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, told The Hill.

“I don’t think there will be [a shutdown],” Cochran added.

Today, the second-leading Republican in the Senate, pro-life Senator John Cornyn, said there should be no government shutdown after Decorators blocked de-funding.

Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) sought Tuesday to quash a growing speculation that Republicans would shut down the government over Planned Parenthood.

“We’re not going to go there,” he said. “I wish there was some way to convince all of you guys that there will be no government shutdown.”