In a roundtable discussion on CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 on Monday night, Cooper asked Grover Norquist what is wrong with allowing a vote in the House on a clean CR if, as the TEApublicans claim, the Democrats do not have the votes to pass it.
Norquist of course deflected the question by saying, “Republicans turn around and say, ‘why not allow the Senate to vote on the issue by issue clean CR’s?’” He then proceeded to repeat what has become a popular lie on the right over the last week, claiming that the President has personally ordered the National Parks to close and that the TEApublicans have attempted to remedy that by passing a CR to fund just the parks.
When asked by Cooper if that was a financially responsible way to fund the government he responded, “Sure!” He then went on to make the ridiculous claim that the President has politicized the shutdown.
At this point Peter Beinart, special correspondent for Newsweek and blogger for the Daily Beast, interjected.
“That’s insane!” Beinart said. “You don’t only keep open the parts of government that you like, you keep open the government.”
Norquist’s brilliant response to that was, “Why?”
Beinart pointed out to Norquist that the law was passed and signed, validated by an election and upheld by the Supreme Court.
Norquist repeated the talking point saying that the shutdown is over the debt ceiling and not Obamacare.
At this point, CNN anchor Christiane Amanpour jumped in. “I have just returned from overseas and overseas people are completely gobsmacked,” she said. “I mean, they just simply can’t believe this. The Financial Times headline is, ‘United States Flirting With Self Destruction.’ That’s just the shutdown. Now with the idea of a default people are freaking out.”
She explained to Norquist that it is not just the military that makes the U.S. a superpower, it is the fact that we have the strongest currency in the world and if the world loses confidence in our currency, it is akin to unilateral disarmament.
Ana Navarro, a CNN political commentator, stated the obvious by pointing out that it takes two to argue and that the American people want both sides to get the government working again.
Watch the exchange in the video below.