ABC's Jonathan Karl Asks Ted Cruz: 'How Much Do Your Colleagues Just Despise You?'

Jonathan Karl, ABC's chief White House correspondent, continued his crusade of attacking Ted Cruz during Sunday morning's edition of This Week With George Stephanopoulos, when the reporter asked the GOP senator from Texas a very harsh question.

After accusing the freshman Republican of being responsible for the 16-day government “Ted Cruz shutdown,” Karl asked: “How much do your colleagues just despise you right on the floor? I mean, I hear some really strong language from your own fellow Republican senators.”

“I agree that a lot of D.C. politicians tried to call it that,” Cruz replied. “And a lot of the media did, too.

“I’m not serving in office because I desperately needed 99 new friends in the U.S. Senate,” the Republican official said. “Given the choice between being reviled in Washington, D.C., and appreciated in Texas or reviled in Texas and appreciated in Washington, I would take the former 100 out of 100 times.”

Cruz added:

Look, let me be very clear: I said throughout this, we shouldn't have a shutdown. I don't want a shutdown. I repeatedly voted to open the government.

The ABC reporter then stated:

People hated this shutdown, they hated this impasse, and this was seen as the “Ted Cruz shutdown.” You more than any single individual were seen as the one that triggered this crisis to begin with.

“We're talking about public opinion nationally,” Karl continued. “But there never would have been a shutdown if you hadn't gone with the strategy of saying we're not even going to fund the government for six weeks unless we can defund ObamaCare.”

The GOP senator replied:

There never would have been a shutdown if [Senate majority leader] Harry Reid and President Obama hadn’t said: “We will not compromise. We will not negotiate. Shut the government down.”

The reporter for ABC News then asked Cruz about the fact that Senate Republicans attacked GOP members of the House of Representatives over that strategy.

“I think it was unfortunate that you saw multiple members of the Senate Republicans going on television attacking House conservatives, attacking the effort to defund ObamaCare, saying it cannot win, it’s a fool's error, and we will lose, this must fail," the Republican official said. "That is a recipe for losing the fight, and it’s a shame.”

Karl asked what Americans can expect from Cruz when the deal to reopen the government runs out in a few months. “What next?” he asked before stating:

We have another deadline, government funding runs out on January 15th. Will you rule out pushing to the brink of another shutdown by saying you would block funding for the government unless ObamaCare is defunded? Will you do that again?

“I would do anything,” the senator said, “and I will continue to do anything I can to stop the train wreck that is ObamaCare."

What I intend to do is continue standing with the American people to work to stop ObamaCare because it isn’t working, it’s costing people’s jobs, and it’s taking away their health care.

As NewsBusters previously reported, ABC News touted what they called a “contentious” interview between Karl and Cruz that included blaming the Republican for the federal government shutdown.

Also, this wasn't the first time this month that Karl tried to slam Cruz and his principles. On October 16, the ABC News reporter offered a one-sided take on the shutdown, sneering that conservatives have "brought the economy to the brink" and "have nothing to show" for it.

Karl partly redeemend himself on Monday, when he told White House press secretary Jay Carney: “You can’t really charge people a fine for not getting health insurance if you don’t fix this mess" of enrolling online for ObamaCare.

Randy Hall
Randy Hall