Senator Ted Cruz, R-Texas, privately apologized to his Republican colleagues Tuesday during their weekly conference luncheon for having disrupted their weekend plans.
Friday, after Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell had agreed to let senators go home for the weekend and vote on the $1.1 trillion spending bill on Monday, Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Cruz objected, in order to try to force a vote on defunding the president's executive actions on immigration. Cruz, in an an oped published in Politico, said that GOP leadership had earlier promised a vote on the defunding measure, but "[L]ate Friday night, Harry Reid apparently changed his mind, and we were told there would be no vote on amnesty."
Cruz's and Lee's objection extended the session, which enabled Reid to begin procedural votes on about two dozen nominees over the weekend, earlier than planned. Cruz's spokesman, Catherine Frazier, said that Cruz "acknowledged that a number of his colleagues had to unexpectedly change their weekend plans, and he apologized to them for inconveniencing their personal schedules." But Frazier said Cruz still believes "that forcing that constitutional vote was critically important, but he apologized for causing any personal hardship."
Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said, "I was pleased that Senator Cruz apologized. I thought it was warranted and I give them credit for doing so. I hope that he'll learn from this experience."
Kelly Ayotte, R-New Hampshire, who missed a planned holiday outing with her children over the weekend, seemed a little less sanguine, saying, "I appreciate his apologies, but we're still getting a number of nominations I don't think we would have otherwise had to."