Republican infighting over the defunding of ObamaCare is growing increasingly nasty and could spill over into the 2014 elections.
Hardline conservatives are pushing for the GOP to shut down the government if Democrats refuse to defund ObamaCare, and are threatening reprisals in primaries if they don’t get their way. Establishment Republicans are just as furious, and aren’t backing down.
The GOP conflict is the most public — and heated — of any since Republicans lost the 2012 elections, and exposes a rift in the party that will likely grow deeper. The civil war could hurt the party’s chances to retake the Senate and hold on to its majority in the House.
Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) are leading the defunding push in the upper chamber, and 80 House Republicans have signed on, as have the conservative groups Club For Growth, Senate Conservatives Fund and Heritage Action. But many other Republicans have voiced opposition, including Speaker John Boehner (Ohio), who has indicated he’s against the plan.