Cruz: GOP a ‘laughingstock’ if ObamaCare repeal fails

Cruz: GOP a ‘laughingstock’ if ObamaCare repeal fails
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Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzSasse statement: Trump nominee who spread conspiracy theories has a ‘tinfoil hat’ Coalition of 44 groups calls for passage of drug pricing bill For the sake of our democracy, politicians must stop bickering MORE (R-Texas) says "failure is not an option" as Republicans seek to repeal and replace ObamaCare, claiming the party would become "a laughingstock" if it cannot pass healthcare reform with control of both the White House and Congress.

“The time for talk is over,” Cruz told conservative activists during a Wednesday rally in Washington, D.C., as first reported by the Washington Examiner. "Now is the time for action.

“Failure is not an option. If Republicans take this opportunity and blow it, we will rightly be considered a laughingstock.”

Cruz said Republicans had campaigned too long on striking the 2010 healthcare act just to fail now.

“For six years, Republicans have campaigned over and over and over again, saying, ‘If only you’d give us the House, we’ll repeal ObamaCare,’ ” he said. " 'If you only give us the Senate, we’ll repeal ObamaCare. If only you give us the White House, we’ll repeal ObamaCare.’ ”

“You know what? We’re out of excuses," the former presidential candidate added. "We must honor our promise and repeal ObamaCare.”

Cruz added the GOP "could very easily screw it up," but he saw reason to be optimistic about legislative success.

“I believe we are poised to be the most productive Congress in decades. We have the opportunity to do an enormous amount of good.”

Cruz’s remarks come amid fierce interparty debate over the House GOP’s legislation for repealing and replacing ObamaCare.

Conservatives have voiced skepticism toward many of its details, especially refundable tax credits many say are a “new entitlement.” Centrists, meanwhile, fear rolling back Medicaid would leave too many uninsured.

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanMcConnell: 'Whoever gets to 60 wins' on immigration Overnight Defense: Latest on spending fight - House passes stopgap with defense money while Senate nears two-year budget deal | Pentagon planning military parade for Trump | Afghan war will cost B in 2018 House passes stopgap spending measure with defense money MORE (R-Wis.) vowed last week the bill would have enough votes to pass when it hits the House floor, though it must first survive hearings in the House Budget and Rules committees, where all Democrats are expected to vote against it.

Thirteen House Republicans have pledged to oppose the bill, according to The Hill’s Whip List, as has Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulPentagon: War in Afghanistan will cost billion in 2018 Overnight Finance: Senators near two-year budget deal | Trump would 'love to see a shutdown' over immigration | Dow closes nearly 600 points higher after volatile day | Trade deficit at highest level since 2008 | Pawlenty leaving Wall Street group Rand Paul calls for punishment if Congress can't reach a long-term budget deal MORE (R-Ky.) in the upper chamber.