Buoyed by a new poll showing that the current federal shutdown has whacked the Republicans and lifted support for Obamacare, one of the president's closest allies decided to thank the architect of the GOP strategy with a fancy gift basket.

“Dear Ted,” said the card to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz on the fruit and snack basket from 1-800-FLOWERS sent by Brad Woodhouse, president of Americans United for Change and the former Democratic Party communications director. “A Texas sized thank you!! Thanks to you, Obamacare is more popular and the GOP is less so. Keep up the Good Work!! Yours, Americans United for Change.”

He added, “it's the best $90 we've spent.” The gag gift, which cost $91.98 including the service charge, is called “Fruit Gathering,” and meant for “your closest friends,” according to the website.

A new Wall Street Journal/NBC poll found that support for the GOP has dropped and Obamacare soared.

Word of Woodhouse's gift has been making the rounds on Capitol Hill, even among some Republicans concerned about Cruz's tactics, dating to his 21-hour speech on the Senate floor aimed at defunding Obamacare.

Woodhouse described Cruz as the “embodiment of the Tea Party. They don’t care about the Republican Party.”

He added that the gift had a serious side: “In the interest of humanity, we sent the food and snacks to his staff because the snack bars are shut down.”

Unclear if Senate gift rules will permit Cruz to keep it. Just in case, the group also sent Cruz a video card with a chipmunk delivering the same message.

Paul Bedard, The Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at pbedard@washingtonexaminer.com.