But the Tea Party Senator from Texas saw meaning in the madness. One of the primary authors of the chaos consuming Washington, it was Cruz and his audacious campaign to #makeDClisten and dismantle the Affordable Care Act that first set the government on course for a shutdown. Now, even as he endures scolding from his Senate elders and panicked second-guessing from his skittish colleagues, Cruz makes no apology for his government-breaking crusade.

This, after all, is exactly what voters sent him to Washington to do.

“When I ran for office I promised Texas voters that I would do everything possible to stop Obamacare, and that’s a commitment I’m working very hard to honor,” Cruz told BuzzFeed. “My top priority is restoring jobs and economic growth, and Obamacare is causing millions of American to lose their jobs or not be hired, to be forced into part-time work, to pay skyrocketing premiums, and to lose or risk losing their health insurance.”

“In the past few weeks, we have engaged in a national debate about the enormous harms caused by Obamacare — all because millions of Americans have spoken up and held our elected officials accountable,” he said.