Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 13, 2016

McConnell, Cornyn Walk Plank on Debt Limit to Ire of Conservatives

Senate Republican leaders Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and John Cornyn of Texas on Wednesday voted to advance legislation that would increase the nation’s borrowing capacity — but not before they spent 40 minutes of the open vote trying to get others to do it for them, likely out of fear of the conservative blowback that came almost immediately.

Earlier this week, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, demanded the 60-vote procedural move, which put McConnell and Cornyn in the uncomfortable position of having to find five Republicans to join Democrats in supporting the debt ceiling measure. By doing so, Cruz gave perfect fodder to tea party groups and candidates, like the Senate Conservatives Fund and McConnell opponent Matt Bevin, against in-cycle Republicans who would need to vote for the bill as opposed to just letting Democrats do it themselves with a simple majority.

Within minutes, the two leaders were getting hit on social media by their opponents.




Bevin’s tweets throughout the day can be read hereherehere and here. He faces off with McConnell on May 20.

Before McConnell and Cornyn recorded their “ayes,” only four Republicans broke ranks, meaning leaders were one vote short.

The cloture motion succeeded with 67 “yes” votes, and four additional Republicans backed McConnell and Cornyn’s position after they recorded their decisive support, emerging en bloc from the cloakroom and voting to advance the bill.

On Tuesday, most House Republican leaders had swallowed the bitter pill of their own creating — raising the debt ceiling, which before the tea party wave of 2010 was a routine congressional procedure.

  • F Michael Addams

    Choke on it..a-holes…,YOU Stooges created the Teabilly…Now..IT’S ALIVE..RUN, mitchy..RUN…!

  • MrSmith

    “Et tu…?”
    Sounds like McConnell was stabbed in the back by the ‘tax, borrow, and spend’ cronies he’s worked for all these years. Let that be a lesson to next year’s Republican -Majority- Leader.
    McConnell should put the country and party before himself for the first time and concede to Blevin so Blevin can save his money for fighting the Democrat.
    A fitting end to Mitch’s career.

  • Ryan

    Stockman continues the unique and fascinating campaign strategy of pretending he’s Ted Cruz.

  • southerndemnut

    McConnell has voted for more debt limit increases under Republican Presidents than under Democratic ones.

  • Brena

    We will soon be sending another fighter to stand with Senator Cruz, and it is not Stockman. Dwayne Stovall will be in a run-off against Cornyn. If you don’t know him, you soon will. Go to FB page Texans for Stovall or Cornyn is toast. Burnt toast made with stale day old bread.

  • T S

    “which put McConnell and Cornyn in the uncomfortable position of having to find five Republicans to join Democrats in supporting the debt ceiling measure.”
    They didn’t have to find those Republicans. They instead could have done the right thing and required spending reductions to go along with the ceiling increase.

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