Rep. King on defund plan: 'Custer, Kamikaze'

CNN
Friday, September 20, 2013 - 9:42am

Rep. Peter King continued his vocal opposition to a plan by fellow Republicans to defund Obamacare by tying it to legislation to keep the government funded.

"Whether it's Custer, whether it's kamikaze, or whether it's Gallipoli or whatever, we are going to lose this," the New York Republican said on CNN's "Situation Room." Gallipoli was a failed allied campaign during World War I.

King accused conservative Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and other GOP anti-Obamacare stalwarts of committing a "fraud against the American people" for arguing that the strategy will work.

"They know it's not going to win and now it's over to them in the Senate," King said. "We'll see what they do. Either put up or shut up."

King remained resolute that the implicit threat of a shutdown is a nonstarter.

"We cannot let the government shutdown," he said of the need to approve new funding legislation by October 1, the start of the next fiscal year.

King did not disagree with Rep. Sean Duffy, a tea party conservative from Wisconsin also appearing on the CNN program, about opposition to Obamacare. King only disagrees with the strategy to link it to government funding efforts.

Duffy said he doesn't want to see a shutdown either.

"We don't want to shut the government down. But we want to have the debate," Duffy said.

When asked by CNN's Wolf Blitzer on the outcome of trying to force Democrats to defund Obamacare, Duffy said anything could happen.

"For all I know, Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell are going to sing kumbaya together. They're going to find an agreement," Duffy said.

"They might negotiate this thing out," Duffy said. "I don't know what they're going to do."

King hoped the debate would, perhaps, discredit some Republicans who he believes are steering the party in a destructive direction.

"We as House Republicans should stop letting Ted Cruz set our agenda for us," King said.

"If he can deliver on this fine. If he can't, then he should keep quiet from now on and we shouldn't listen to him."

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