“To somehow allege that many of us are nor haven’t fought hard enough, I think, does not comport with the action that took place on the floor of the Senate,” McCain said.
But he took particular affront to Cruz’s statement during his all-nighter that the people who say Obamacare can’t be defunded are similar to former British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, whom Cruz described as saying, “accept the Nazis. Yes, they’ll dominate the continent of Europe, but that’s not our problem.”
Cruz went on to say: “I suspect those same pundits who say defunding Obamacare can’t be done, if it had been in the 1940s, we would have been listening to them. They would have been saying you cannot defeat the Germans.”
McCain said, “I resoundingly reject that allegation. That allegation in my view does a great disservice for those brave Americans and those who stood up and said what’s happening in Europe cannot stand.”
McCain also declined to call Cruz’s nearly daylong talkfest a filibuster. “I can’t call it a filibuster because a filibuster is intended to delay passage of legislation. There was no doubt that there was a time certain — that time on the floor would have to expire. So I guess the kind of depiction I can say is extended oratory.”
Niels Lesniewski has covered the Senate for CQ Roll Call since January 2010, and more recently as a staff writer and resident procedure guru for Roll Call. Niels holds degrees in both government and theater but sometimes can't tell the difference between the two. @nielslesniewski
Meredith Shiner has covered Senate leadership, legislation and everything in between for Roll Call since joining in June 2011, having previously covered Congress and national politics for Politico. @meredithshiner