Sen. Ted Cruz Thursday turned former House Speaker John Boehner's insults
back against him, delivering a blistering response saying the former House leader's attacks "reveal something that is wrong with Washington," and that he's never worked with Boehner and doesn't know him.
"When John Boehner calls me 'Lucifer,' he's not directing that at me," the GOP presidential candidate and Texas senator said in a Fort Wayne, Indiana press conference
"He's directing that at you. What Boehner is angry with me for is not something I've ever said to him. What Boehner is angry with me for is standing with the American people and energizing and encouraging House conservatives to stand with the American people and actually honor the commitments we've made."
On Wednesday, Boehner, during a chat with Stanford University, blasted Cruz as a "miserable son of a b****" and called him "Lucifer in the flesh."
"I have Democrat friends and Republican friends. I get along with almost everyone, but I have never worked with a more miserable son of a b--- in my life," Boehner commented.
He further said that he and front-runner Donald Trump play golf together and are "texting buddies," but he would not vote for Cruz even if he does get the GOP nomination.
But on Thursday, Cruz said he's never worked with Boehner, and he's only met him two or three times.
"If I said 50 words in my life to John Boehner, I'd be surprised," said Cruz, nothing that "every one" of those conversations "has consisted of pleasantries like 'good to see you, Mr. Speaker.'"
"I've never had any substantive conversation with John Boehner in any respect," said Cruz, but he did comment that during the government shutdown, he and Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee reached out to Boehner.
"I offered to come over and work with the speaker," said Cruz. "I asked him, 'can we resolve this and actually get something meaningful done to stop the disaster that is Obamacare?' John Boehner's response was 'I have no interest in talking to you. What possibly could be accomplished by having a conversation? No, I will not meet.'"
So, said Cruz, "when he says I'm the biggest SOB he's ever worked with, he's never worked with me."
And Boehner is angry, said Cruz, because conservatives said that if they promised to repeal Obamacare, that meant "let's actually stand up and fight Obamacare. What Boehner is angry with is that we said if we promise to stop amnesty, let's actually honor our promises."
Further, said Cruz, Boehner is angry because the "American people are holding him accountable."
And over the years, said Cruz, Trump has been "writing checks to Boehner, writing checks to Hillary, funding the corrupt system."
Boehner is angry, said Cruz, "because I led a movement of the people to hold Washington accountable. Donald Trump is playing a part or playing a role to use the word of his lobbyist campaign manager, pretending to be an outsider.
"Donald Trump is the ultimate Washington insider. He is a lobbyist who has gotten rich exploiting government power to hammer the little guy."
Cruz also pushed back on news that he and Ohio Gov. John Kasich have formed an alliance to combat Trump by backing away from each other in Indiana, Oregon and New Mexico.
"I recognize the media is eager to talk about an alliance," said Cruz. "There is no alliance. Kasich and I made a determination where to focus party energy, where to focus our assets. Where to focus our resources."
But he does believe Kasich to be a "good man, an honorable man," but they do disagree on several issues, while agreeing that a Clinton presidency would be a disaster, and that a Trump nomination would be equal to Clinton winning the White House.
"Kasich made the decision in his own political self-interest to withdraw from Indiana and to go compete elsewhere and that was a perfectly reasonable decision," said Cruz.
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