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Colorado senator rips Cruz’s ‘crocodile tears’ over shutdown

January 25, 2019 GMT
Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., leaves the chamber after an emotional speech on the Senate floor over the partial government shutdown, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., leaves the chamber after an emotional speech on the Senate floor over the partial government shutdown, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Signs of strain from the 34-day partial government shutdown are emerging on the Senate floor.

Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado tore into Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas on Thursday after Cruz backed a GOP bill to pay Coast Guard members but not reopen the government.

The normally mild-mannered Bennet erupted in a fiery speech, saying, “These crocodile tears that the senator from Texas is crying for first responders are too hard for me to take.”

Bennet noted that Cruz single-handedly shut down the government in 2013 when Colorado was flooded.

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Bennet said eight people were killed and many homes and businesses were destroyed because of the flooding. “And because of the senator from Texas, this government was shut down for politics.”

Cruz led a 16-day shutdown over the Affordable Care Act.