by Jim Nintzel
Don't be fooled if John McCain refers to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz as "my friend"—he does that with everyone. Half the time, it's code for "you're an asshole."
One of the big headlines coming out of GQ profile of Cruz is a tidbit about how much McCain dislikes his new colleague:
For a while, veteran Republicans groused in private about the new guy. But it boiled over when Cruz joined Kentucky senator Rand Paul's filibuster of John Brennan's nomination to head the CIA—an act of protest against Obama's drone program. John McCain, already seething over Cruz's treatment of Hagel, called them "wacko birds." "He fucking hates Cruz," one adviser of the Arizona senator told me. "He's just offended by his style."
Cruz has put the GOP in a curious position this month: Having forced the House to pass legislation that prevents the federal government from shutting down only if Obamacare is defended, he's now in the weird position of trying to convince his Senate colleagues to filibuster the bill to prevent the Senate from even beginning debate on the bill. Can anyone explain this stategery to me in the comments?
ETA: It appears that Senate Minority Leader doesn't see much stategery going on with Cruz, either. Talking Points Memo reports:
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) broke with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) on Monday, revealing that he won't filibuster legislation to fund the government in service of conservative goals to defund Obamacare.
The Republican leader's decision is a major blow to the push by Cruz and powerful conservative activist groups, who wanted Republicans to unite and filibuster a continuing resolution until Democrats caved agreed to gut funding for the Affordable Care Act.
"Senator McConnell supports the House Republicans' bill and will not vote to block it, since it defunds Obamacare and funds the government without increasing spending by a penny," McConnell spokesman Don Stewart told TPM in an email Monday. "He will also vote against any amendment that attempts to add Obamacare funding back into the House Republicans' bill."