Democratic Senator: Obamacare Is Like 'Green Eggs and Ham'

J. Scott Applewhite/AP

In his 21-hour speech on the Senate floor Tuesday, Ted Cruz presented a number of arguments for defunding the Affordable Care Act. He also, about five hours into his speech -- which was not a filibuster -- cracked open a copy of Green Eggs and Ham to read to his two young daughters, who were watching at home.

"Green Eggs and Ham was my favorite book when I was a boy," said the Republican senator from Texas, who also claimed his father had invented Dr. Seuss's iconic dish.

Sen. Chuck Schumer, who addressed the floor after Cruz finished speaking Wednesday afternoon, finds that hard to believe. "Anyone who knows that book knows that the moral of that book is try something before you condemn it," the New York Democrat said. "You might actually like it."

Schumer drew a comparison between the book's main character, Sam-I-Am, and Cruz. "The main character in Green Eggs and Ham resisted eating green eggs and ham. Maybe if he were a senator, he'd speak on the floor for 21 hours. But then when he tasted green eggs and ham, he actually liked it. Maybe, Sen. Cruz, as the president's health care bill goes into effect, you may actually find that you and your constituents actually like it."

The Senate voted unanimously Wednesday afternoon to close the debate on the stopgap spending bill that would strip funding for the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, setting the stage for voting to approve its own version to send to the House.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.