Tom DeLay: ‘American people never miss the government’ when it’s shut down

By David Edwards
Friday, September 27, 2013 9:33 EDT
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Tom DeLay speaks to CNN
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Recently-acquitted former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R) on Friday advised Republicans to “stick to your guns” because it was a “false notion” that refusing to raise the debt limit could hurt the credit of the United States.

In an interview on CNN, DeLay told host Chris Cuomo that the Republican Party would not take the blame if the Republican Party forced the government to be shut down over President Barack Obama’s health care reform law.

“This notion that it hurts the Republicans is totally wrong,” he explained. “Because in 1995, we won. We won the budget cuts we wanted. We showed Bill Clinton that we’d take him off the cliff and we got welfare reform and a balance budget. And we won seats in the next election. So, I don’t know where they come up with this notion that a shutdown hurts Republicans.”

Cuomo pointed out that then-House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA) took a beating in the polls and Clinton’s popularity improved after Republicans forced the government to be shut down in the 1990s.

“What is your advice to your colleagues in Washington, D.C., looking at the debt limit situation, knowing what it can do to the country, what do you give them as advice?” the CNN host wondered.

“Hold firm, stick to your guns, stand strong — and you’ll ultimately win,” DeLay insisted.

“Even if you wind up screwing up the credit of the United States of America?” Cuomo pressed.

“It won’t end up screwing up the credit of America,” DeLay laughed. “That is all false notion. Every shut down — and there’s been many shut downs — frankly, the American people never miss the government.”

“I hear you on that,” Cuomo replied. “Of course, the debt ceiling is a different issue.”

Watch this video from CNN’s New Day, broadcast Sept. 27, 2014.

David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
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