Ted Cruz Smacks Down Candy Crowley for Saying 'It's Blackmail' to Offer Separate Funding Bills

CNN viewers familiar with State of the Union host Candy Crowley certainly weren't surprised when she came armed to her Sunday interview with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tx.) with Democrat talking points.

Fortunately, the Texas Senator was prepared and marvelously smacked her down when she twice claimed that Democrats feel blackmailed by Republicans proposing separate bills to fund parts of the government (video follows with transcript and commentary):

SENATOR TED CRUZ (R-TEXAS): It is Republicans in Congress who are passing bills to reopen the parks, to reopen the memorials, to fund cancer research, to fund our veterans, and it is the Democrats who are refusing to have a vote. I mean, Candy, why won't Harry Reid let the Senate vote on the eight bills the House has passed to fund vital parts of the government?

CANDY CROWLEY, HOST: I think he would say because he thinks he's being blackmailed, but I want to continue this conversation. We'll be back. We got to take a quick break. We want to talk about a couple of things when we return. I also want to talk about some of the blowback you're getting from members of your own party. They reportedly gave you an earful behind closed doors saying you don't have an end game strategy and you're, quote, "selling snake oil." Your chance to respond after this.

A bit after the commercial break the word "blackmail" surfaced again:

CRUZ: The House has passed eight other bills funding things like our veterans, funding things like the national parks, and Harry Reid has killed them. Now, let me be clear, because it's important to understand. These bills, none of them even mention Obamacare. They're programs completely unrelated to Obamacare.

And the position of President Obama and Harry Reid is, if you aren't funding everything in the government, they will fund nothing. You know, we launched a national website, fundourvets.com that says, listen, regardless of the shutdown, veterans ought to be above politics. They ought to be bipartisan agreement. We need to honor our commitments to our veterans.

CROWLEY: But obviously, they feel that if you can use this kind of leverage, they feel it's blackmail. But let me ask you something about your fellow Republicans.

CRUZ: But Candy, let me press back. It's twice you've said Harry Reid would say it's blackmail. And I want to press back, because I actually -- I think that's a false claim with no basis. The bill that the House passed on the VA simply funds the VA. It doesn't mention anything about Obamacare. It doesn't mention anything about anything else. Now, for hundreds of years, the way Congress is appropriated has been one topic at a time. How is it blackmail to say we think we should fund the veterans? Do you agree? That's a yes or no vote. Now Harry Reid refuses to let the Democrats vote on that. But how is it blackmail to say, we may not agree on everything but is there anything we can agree on? We ought to agree on supporting our veterans.


Good point, right?

Sadly, Crowley was having none of it and instead asked, "Do you think you hurt the Republican Party brand?"

This made Cruz laugh.

I understand why.

It's one thing for the public to be woefully informed about the budget process, but for a CNN host to believe a chamber of Congress passing individual spending bills is a form of blackmail is truly pathetic.

It makes you wonder why people such as Crowley become journalists.

Was it ever about informing the public, or do such folks get into this industry just to advance their political beliefs as well as politicians they support?

These days it most certainly seems the latter, doesn't it?

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.