Sen. Ted Cruz brought Republican Party infighting to the public stage on Wednesday, slamming his colleagues as untrustworthy on spending.
“Let me be clear: I don’t trust the Republicans. And I don’t trust the Democrats,” the freshmen Republican from Texas said. “And I think a whole lot of Americans likewise don’t trust the Republicans and the Democrats, because it is leadership in both parties that has gotten us in this mess.”
That “mess,” Cruz was describing is the country’s budget, an issue where Democrats and Republicans have famously dueled in recent years.
Moderate Republicans in the Senate recently pushed for a committee to reconcile the differences between the competing House and Senate budgets, but conservatives like Cruz rejected the idea, because it involves involve raising the debt ceiling.
Sen. John McCain, a Republican from Arizona, characterized the mistrust as “bizarre,” prompting Cruz’s blunt statement.
This isn’t the first time Cruz has made brazen comments toward his own party: at a Tea Party town hall last month, Cruz called Republicans “squishes” on gun control.
On Thursday’s Morning Joe, Republican National Committee Reince Priebus said “Ted speaks for lots of Americans” who are sick of Congress, adding that his statement “isn’t unreasonable to a lot of Americans.”
“But is that how a leader should act?” asked former Tennessee Democratic Congressmen Harold Ford Jr.
Watch the full conversation below.