INDIANAPOLIS | Had a few thousand votes gone a different way last year, an Indiana senator likely would be standing side-by-side with U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, in his quixotic effort to defund Obamacare.
Republican state Treasurer Richard Mourdock was defeated by Democrat Joe Donnelly in the 2012 U.S. Senate contest. But in a series of recent postings on the Facebook social networking website, Mourdock makes it clear if elected he would have allied with Cruz.
"Ted Cruz is a profile in courage, not because he started a fight he knew he would win, but because he had the guts to push back knowing the odds and consequences," Mourdock wrote.
"Cruz honored his promise to those who elected him and, it seems, he exposed the bullies in the chamber for who they are. In those two aspects he has succeeded admirably."
Mourdock acknowledges Republicans don't actually have the votes to defund Obamacare, and he recognizes that Americans probably will blame Republicans if their attempts to block funds for the Affordable Care Act result in a government shutdown Tuesday.
But he said the defunding battle is worth it because it shows voters Republicans stand on principle — no matter what.
"The Affordable Care Act is the legislative equivalent of Sept. 11th terrorism. The economic carnage of the terrorist attacks cost hundreds of billions of dollars, and estimates are now placing the cost of Obamacare at $4 trillion," Mourdock wrote. "Accepting Obamacare accomplishes nothing consistent with Republican policies of governing."
The two-term state treasurer is not the first Hoosier Republican to compare Obamacare to 9/11.
Prior to his election as governor, U.S. Rep. Mike Pence, R-Columbus, likened the 2012 U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding the constitutionality of the health law to the terrorist attacks. Pence later apologized.
Mourdock sees no reason to apologize, because he claims the effects of Obamacare are certain to prove disastrous.
"It is a simple question: Which shutdown are you willing to accept?" Mourdock wrote. "The temporary shutdown of a obese, wasteful government as a step to making it more efficient, or the permanent shutdown of the individual dreams of millions and millions of Americans?"