Former Vice President Walter Mondale on Tuesday laid blame on House Republicans and the tea party for the partial government shutdown and looming debt ceiling deadline that could result in the nation's first default.
"I'm very angry at this strategy of train wreck to force a reluctant government to do what someone wants," Mondale told CNBC.com, referring to efforts by House Republicans to tie the debt ceiling fight to the repeal of Obamacare. "The tea party types, those House Republican hardliners, are blackmailing the rest of the country."
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Though he didn't mention him by name, Mondale was probably referring to Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, a renegade tea party favorite, who last month spoke on the Senate floor for 21 hours in favor of withholding funds for government operations unless Obamacare is gutted.
Some House Republicans' insistence to refuse support for a continuing resolution to fund the government without changes to the Affordable Care Act undoubtedly played some role in triggering the shutdown.
But Mondale called that a "dangerous" strategy that should not be repeated.