Sen. Rand Paul: Cruz is “pretty much done for” in Senate

Kilmeade then asked Paul if McConnell has let him down by pushing for a temporary funding measure that does not eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood. An NBC/Wall Street Journal poll released Sunday found that a combined 52 percent of Republican primary voters supported Donald J. Trump, Ben Carson or Carly Fiorina, none of whom has ever been elected to office. Acknowledging that a good legislator must sometimes put pragmatism above ideology hardly made Boehner a Republican in name only – or a RINO, the dreaded label Republican absolutists attach to anyone they consider insufficiently conservative. Last week, he received a hero’s welcome at the Values Voters Summit of conservatives in Washington, with line after line in his speech receiving a standing ovation – most notably when he took a parting shot at House Speaker John Boehner, who announced that same day he was resigning, undone by the same anti-establishment anger that Cruz has been stoking. Are they just people out there yelling and screaming? Marco Rubio as the establishment favorite and Cruz as the “outsider” candidate. His colleagues are overwhelmingly behind McConnell in his ongoing struggle with Cruz over tactics, having concluded that they won’t stick their necks out to fight fights that likely can not be won while Obama holds the veto pen. Dewhurst, in McConnell’s mind, would be another political asset for him, in his decades-long dream to become Senate Majority Leader. “I am still just as hardcore in saying what we are doing is wrong, I just chose not to call people liars on the Senate floor and it’s just a matter of different perspectives on how best to get to the end result”.

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I approach things a little different”, Paul continued.

“The Democrats are objecting to my speaking further”. Never mind that an attempt to defund Planned Parenthood would have failed because Democrats would have blocked a vote on the issue in the Senate. “My only request is-can you come more often?”

The latest indication came Monday night, when the tea party Republican sought a vote on scuttling Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s effort to fund the federal government with Planned Parenthood money intact.

Rand Paul may very well already be on his way out of the Republican presidential campaign, but he’s going out with a bang, not a whimper, forcefully rebuking his Senate colleague and Republican presidential rival, Ted Cruz, for being the root of Senate dysfunction.

Something needs to change; the writing is on the wall, said Michael Needham, who heads Heritage Action for America, a conservative advocacy group that has sharply criticized the party leadership. Hell, they all but wrote his next attack ad for him. “We don’t want a go-along, we need leaders, we need the Churchills and the Thatchers and the Reagans.”

“It doesn’t get much better than that!”

The frontrunner, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., is the former House Whip who notoriously struggled to get the fractious GOP in line. “I wouldn’t use an institution in that way”, said Rep. Carlos Curbelo, a first-term Republican from Florida who has endorsed Jeb Bush.

“The position of Republican leadership boils down to this: They will support 100% of the priorities of Democrats”, said Cruz, a Republican who is running for president.

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If we shut the government down, were dead, he said.

Paul Rand handout