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Senator's stand adds to chance of shutdown

A new roadblock has arisen in the passage of the continuing resolution that would provide temporary funding of the federal government through Dec. 31: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).

A new roadblock has arisen in the passage of the continuing resolution that would provide temporary funding of the federal government through Dec. 31: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).

Cruz has vowed that he and other GOP leaders will do “everything we can” to prevent passage of funding for the Affordable Care Act — apparently even if it causes a government-wide shutdown, although Cruz says he wants to avoid one.

"No American wants a government shutdown. I don't want a government shutdown,” Sen. Cruz said on Sept. 23. “The request that I promulgated … was to pass the Continuing Resolution that the House of Representatives passed. And if that had happened, there would be no government shutdown."

Last week, the House GOP majority voted to fund the government with a temporary CR,  but the GOP bill refuses to fund the ACA—and both the White House and the Democratic-controlled Senate say they won’t approve any bill that doesn’t fund the ACA.

The differences might have been worked out, beginning with a compromise bill that might have passed in the Senate—where the partisan divide is generally less sharp.

But in Cruz's stand, if the Democratic Senate would simply pass the House Republican majority CR bill—the one that refuses to fund the ACA—then the rest of the government would get funding, and there would be no government shutdown.

And Cruz said he does not intend to compromise, and also has threatened to filibuster any attempt to end debate and vote on the bill on a straight majority basis. Instead, he has said he will work to block any Senate effort to even a vote to fund the ACA, unless a supermajority (60-vote) is required.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) so far has defeated Cruz’s efforts to require a supermajority vote to fund the ACA—and Senate Democrats—and many Senate Republicans—have condemned Cruz’s various attempts to force the passage of the House CR bill.  

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