The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

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October 20, 2013

GOP's McConnell: Don't expect another government closure//

— WASHINGTON — Republican leaders said Sunday that they will not resort to tactics from the last round of budget talks, which resulted in a 16-day shutdown in government operations and the threat of default on the federal debt.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., promised that his party would not allow another closure, saying that outcome would not align with Republican principles.

"Shutting down the government, in my view, is not conservative policy," McConnell said during an interview on CBS's "Face The Nation." "I don't think a two-week paid vacation for federal employees is conservative policy. A number of us were saying back in July that this strategy could not and would not work, and of course it didn't. So there will not be another government shutdown. You can count on that."

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, however, doubled down on President Barack Obama's health-care law.

"I would do anything and I will continue to do anything I can to stop the train wreck that is Obamacare," Cruz said on ABC's "This Week."

Cruz, a central figure in the GOP push to tie the health law with budget talks, blamed members of his party for failing to win concessions, suggesting GOP lawmakers should have united around his message.

"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 errand, we will lose, this must fail," Cruz said. "That is a recipe for losing the fight, and it's a shame."

But leaders from both parties largely said Sunday that government shutdowns and the threat of default will not help GOP lawmakers achieve their goals.

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