Rand Paul: Defunding Effort Likely to Fail, But Fight Must Continue

Wednesday, 25 Sep 2013 05:49 PM

By Greg Richter

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Sen. Rand Paul backs the efforts of Sens. Ted Cruz and Mike Lee in trying to defund Obamacare, but he admits their efforts are likely to fail.

"We may lose, but it doesn't mean you shouldn't fight," Paul said Wednesday on Fox News Channel's "Your World with Neil Cavuto."

"It may be that we don't win this time. In all likelihood, we won't," the Kentucky Republican said, noting that Republicans don't control the Senate or the White House.

But he said there should be a disruption of how things are done on Capitol Hill.

"We need to rebel against the status quo," he said. "The status quo's given us $17 trillion in debt, and, frankly, that's been a little bit from both parties."

Cruz, R-Texas, talked for more than 21 hours from the Senate floor beginning Tuesday afternoon and ending at noon Wednesday. It wasn't an official filibuster, but garnered attention from both supporters and detractors.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., called it a "big waste of time," reports The Washington Post. Republican leaders, such as Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., fear the tactic will hurt the image of the party with voters.

Paul told Cavuto he thinks it's a bad idea to shut down the government, which is what many fear will happen if tea party members stick to their guns.

"I don't want to shut the government down. But I do want to defund Obamacare. So, are those mutually exclusive?" Paul asked.

President Barack Obama has delayed certain parts of the Affordable Care Act, including the employer mandate to provide insurance for employees.

"Why not delay the whole damn thing?" Paul asked. He admitted, however, he would be willing to compromise and "accept a whole lot of permutations of that."

Paul was scheduled to discuss the matter further at 6 p.m. EST on CNN's "Situation Room."

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