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Cruz: Political 'tsunami' needed to win fight to defund ObamaCare

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said Sunday it would take a political “tsunami” of grassroots pressure to win his fight to defund President Obama’s healthcare law in the coming budget showdown.

“It is going to take a tsunami, and I am going to do everything I can to encourage that tsunami,” Cruz said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

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The freshman Texas senator, who is reportedly considering a run for president in 2016, is working with other conservatives to insist that any bill to fund the government past Sept. 30 explicitly prohibit money from being used to implement the healthcare law. With Republican leaders leery of the push, Cruz acknowledged that as of yet, advocates of the plan “do not have the votes right now” in the House or Senate to make it happen.

He held out hope that when the fight heats up in September, public pressure would lead conservatives to victory.

“Now is the single best time to stop ObamaCare,” Cruz said. “If it doesn’t happen now, it’s never going to happen.”

As for replacing the law with other reforms, Cruz said, “once ObamaCare is defunded or repealed, theres a great deal we can do on healthcare.”

He called for expanding health savings accounts, allowing purchases of health insurance across state lines and delinking health insurance from employment.

Appearing on the same program, former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean (D) said Cruz “doesn’t know anything about healthcare.”

“These are crazy ideas that are from the far right,” said Dean, a former presidential candidate and chairman of the Democratic National Committee. “God help us if he ever becomes anything more than a senator from Texas.”