- Ted Cruz was one of the lawmakers blamed for the 2013 shutdown
- Susan Collins said she was speechless that he said he opposed shutdowns
Earlier on Monday, Cruz told reporters he is not for shutting the government down, following a vote to reopen the federal government after its being shuttered nearly three days.
"Look, we shouldn't be shutting the government down. I have consistently opposed shutdowns. In 2013, I said we shouldn't be shutting the government down," Cruz told reporters on Monday."I went to the Senate floor repeatedly asking unanimous consent to reopen the government."
Cruz is widely accused by Democrats and members of his own party of organizing conservative lawmakers to shut down the government in 2013
over a failed plan to defund the Affordable Care Act, though to this day Cruz has disputed that characterization.
When a reporter pointed out that he had "stood in the way" of preventing a shutdown in 2013, Cruz responded it was "factually incorrect and a wonderful media narrative" that he did that.
At least one of Cruz's Republican colleagues appeared to see a connection. When told about Cruz's comments earlier on government shutdowns, Collins paused in her response and appeared to be in disbelief.
"You've rendered me speechless," she said, then paused. "2013. 2013."
Cruz has not immediately responded to CNN's request for comment on the Maine Republican's remarks.
Cruz also was one of the 18 senators
who voted against the bill that would end the 2013 shutdown.