I've heard a lot of ridiculous claims for why the public should believe that Republicans are not the ones to blame if they shutdown the government over the dismantling of the Affordable Care Act, but this one has to take the cake.
From this Sunday's Meet the Press, here's Idaho Rep. Raul Labrador arguing that the Republicans are not the ones doing the hostage taking because their members were not Tweeting about it last night.
Maybe some of them just had too much to drink to figure out how to use their phones.
FMR. GOV. JOHN HUNTSMAN: You have Republicans know this is a loser for them. So Republicans are going to have to learn the lessons of this whole episode. And that will be you can't have an all-or-nothing approach.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: But the reality here--
FMR. GOV. JOHN HUNTSMAN: You're going to have to problem-solve every step of the way and find areas that don't work and fix them as we proceed.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: But the reality is the Democrats think that this is a loser for us. I think everybody agrees that this is a loser for us if the government shuts down. And that's why I think the president of the Democrats want to shut down the government.
If you look last night at Twitter, there wasn't a single Republican on Twitter who was saying, "Let's shut down the government." But every single Democrat was saying, "The Republicans want to shut down the government." The politics are coming from the other side, as well. So let's be really honest about this.
And the other side would like to see Republicans in trouble in 2014. The other side wants to make sure that they're not even willing to meet us halfway. They're not even willing-- Harry Reed will not negotiate with John Boehner. The president will not meet with John Boehner. And John Boehner's actually trying to be responsible here. And he's willing to meet with--
DAVID GREGORY: John Boehner does not agree with you. John Boehner does not want to shut down. John Boehner does not--
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: But he--
DAVID GREGORY: --want to take this stand.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: So you're saying that I want to shut down the government.
DEE DEE MYERS: Yeah.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: I don't want to shut down the government.
DEE DEE MYERS: Will you vote for--
DAVID GREGORY: Well, I'm not (UNINTEL PHRASE).
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: Yeah.
DAVID GREGORY: He doesn't-- John Boehner, the Speaker of the House, is actually not interested in trying to filet up Obamacare right now, as you are.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: No, he wanted to--
DAVID GREGORY: He just has a different view about it.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: --do it in the debt ceiling.
DAVID GREGORY: Yeah.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: And I just disagree with him. I thought that this was the moment to do it--
DAVID GREGORY: To have the fight.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: --not have the debt ceiling-- yeah.
DEE DEE MYERS: So what's the endgame, though, Congressman? Are you willing to vote for-- a continued resolution that comes back that does not delay or de-fund Obamacare?
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: I am not. But I think there's enough people in the Republican Party who are willing to do that. And I think that's what you're going to see.
DEE DEE MYERS: But would you--
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: Our first request was to completely def-- de-fund the program. And we knew we were going to lose on that. Now we're asking for a delay, which, again, I don't think is an unreasonable thing to do. You know, your boss, Tip O'Neil, shut down the government 12 different times. And you didn't call him a terrorist.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: No, it wasn't--
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: ou did not call him--
CHRIS MATTHEWS: These were always issues of a couple of days. And they were always resolved, and they were over numbers. And it was both sides, though. Let's be fair. Both sides were doing it.
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: But it happened.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: But you said once--
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Where'd you get your number from?
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: It's from The Washington Post.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: No, it was seven times, though. You were--
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: No. So--
CHRIS MATTHEWS: --counting all the times--
REP RAUL LABRADOR: No.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: --since the '70s. Look, they were always taking--
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: No, there were 17 times since the '70s, and 12 under your boss.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Okay, let me--
REP. RAUL LABRADOR: (UNINTEL).
DAVID GREGORY: All right, Chris.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Let me tell you this. They were issues of a day or two. They were issues of funding. Now, what I said before is you can argue over numbers, and then you can-- if it's seven or nine, make it eight. But when you say we're going to get rid of the number one program that you put into law and put in the history books, and your party's been fighting for, for half a century, you can't say, "Give me that." That's a non-negotiable stand.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: That's the problem.