Senator Chuck Schumer on Friday accused Republican lawmakers of holding the country “hostage” and predicted they’d lose a looming fight over the debt ceiling and government funding.
“I have never seen such an extreme group of people adopt such an insane policy,” said Mr. Schumer, speaking to reporters in Brooklyn this afternoon after endorsing Democratic mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio.
But Mr. Schumer predicted House Republicans would fail in their bid to de-fund Obamacare by coupling a bill with legislation to keep the federal government running.
“What I have found in all my years is when a party’s fighting with each other on these issues, they’re gonna lose,” he declared. “And this idea that we should hold hostage Social Security payments or the job of a road worker whose funding will be cut off or food safety–’cause we won’t have food safety workers–is awful.”
“If you believe strongly in an issue, fight it our on those grounds. But don’t hold millions of Americans hostage. And that’s what the Republican right-wing is doing in the House and Senate,” he added.
Congress has until October 1 to pass the funding bill, or the government will shut down, like it did back in the 1990s. But Mr. Schumer said he expected Tea Party Republicans to throw in the towel long before the deadline, arguing that public sentiment was against them.
Every day that goes by, he argued, “the public is more aroused. They realize who the culprits are …. At the end of the day, mainstream Republicans are gonna feel such pressure because of the devastation that shutting down the government or not raising the debt ceiling would happen that they’ll back off.”
During an appearance on MSNBC’s Morning Joe earlier today, Mr. Schumer reiterated his view that Republicans would eventually capitulate, saying that, “At the end of the day, they’ll blink,” according to The Hill.