A day after Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) hinted that he could force another government shutdown if Republicans win back the Senate in November, a senate hopeful suggested he would be on board with another shutdown, lauding the party’s decision to let the government close this past October.
Speaking at a candidates’ forum on Thursday, David Perdue responded to a moderator’s question about his backing for the 16-day shutdown led by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), saying “that speaks for itself.” “I think it was the situation that we had in Washington was over Obamacare,” he added. “What I was saying was that we cannot default on our interest payments.”
In October, the candidate told reporters that he would not have voted to advance legislation in the Senate that would fund the government if included dollars for the Affordable Care Act, leading to a standoff that kept federal agencies closed for more than two weeks and impacted states across the country. The shuttering cost Georgia at least $324 million dollars, according to an estimate from Moody’s, a financial ratings company. Nationally, the shutdown and the uncertainty over whether lawmakers would vote to raise the country’s debt ceiling reduced economic output by 0.25 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013 and cost about 120,000 private sector jobs in the first two weeks of October.
On Wednesday, McConnell told reporters that the country could expect more shutdowns in the future, pledging to attach a host of Republican policy priorities to must-pass spending bills if the GOP takes back the senate in November. Perdue adopts a similar line at campaign rallies. On Tuesday, he told an audience in Cobb County, “We will win the Senate back. We will put forth an agenda that will force this president to either veto or get in line and let’s move forward.” Should the GOP prevail in November, its commitment to strong arming the president could lead to more high-stakes spending fights and possible government closures.