Cruz: Budget deal 'deeply concerning'

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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) finds the budget deal brokered by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) "deeply concerning," his office said Wednesday.

The senator is on a flight back from South Africa, where he attended the memorial services for Nelson Mandela with a group of fellow lawmakers, so he hasn't had time to fully review the proposal, spokeswoman Catherine Frazier said.

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But she added that he did take issue with much of it.

"We shouldn't sacrifice the modest 2.4 percent spending cuts already in law in exchange for a mere possibility of future reductions. While Sen. Cruz supports adjusting the sequester so it doesn't disproportionately target vital defense spending, we should be taking a serious look at what is actually driving our debt and deficits, not raising spending in exchange for minor changes and promises of future action," she said in an email to The Hill.

Cruz is one of a handful of likely 2016 presidential contenders to criticize the deal.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on Wednesday called it "shameful" to increase funding past sequestration levels, and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) warned during an appearance on Mike Huckabee's radio show that "to walk away from the already agreed upon reductions in spending that were so difficult to achieve, I think opens the floodgates that really threaten to put us right back in these spending habits."

Their wariness comes as nearly half a dozen conservative groups have announced their opposition to the proposal, which would set a top-line spending number just over $1 trillion for each of the next two fiscal years and replace $63 billion in sequester cuts with other savings. It also includes an additional $22.5 billion reduction in the deficit.