Story at a glance
- Photos of Cruz boarding a flight from Houston to Cancún began circulating online late Wednesday.
- The photos sparked fierce backlash online and prompted the Democratic Party of Texas to call on his resignation.
- Cruz explained he flew out of the country to drop his children off with friends for a trip and would be returning Thursday afternoon.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) is facing criticism for traveling to Mexico for a planned family vacation on Wednesday after his state was slammed by a deadly winter storm that left millions of Texans without power for several days, according to The New York Times.
Photos of Cruz boarding a flight from Houston to Cancún began circulating online late Wednesday. The Times reports a member of Cruz’s staff contacted Houston Police Department personnel on Wednesday to request assistance in helping Cruz make his way out of Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport. Cruz reportedly planned a return to Texas Thursday.
The report comes as millions of people across Texas have been struggling without power and heat and experienced water system disruptions for several days due to frigid temperatures.
The photos sparked fierce backlash online and prompted the Democratic Party of Texas to call on his resignation.
After the George Floyd uprisings in Minneapolis, when thousands were struggling to find food, my office and I held food drives and donated more than 20 tons of food to the community.— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) February 18, 2021
Meanwhile, as millions of Texans lack power, heat, and food, @tedcruz heads off to Cancun. Hm.
Reuters has acquired a photo of Ted Cruz at the Cancun airport today on his way back to Texas.— Yashar Ali (@yashar) February 18, 2021
Notice how he’s wearing a mask with the Texas State flag on it. pic.twitter.com/Tdl6msfPBx
Today would be a great day to expel Ted Cruz from the Senate. Let him hear about it from Cancun.— Robert Reich (@RBReich) February 18, 2021
Meanwhile, some conservatives defended Cruz’s trip, saying there’s not much the senator could do in the state anyway.
“What could @tedcruz do if he were here in Texas? I’m hard-pressed to say,” Dinesh D’Souza tweeted. “If he’s in Cancun, that means he’s not using up valuable resources of energy, food and water that can now be used by someone else. This is probably the best thing he could do for the state right now.”
But in a statement Thursday, Cruz explained he flew out of the country to drop his children off with friends for a trip and would be returning Thursday afternoon.
“With school cancelled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends. Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon,” Cruz said in a statement.
“My staff and I are in constant communication with state and local leaders to get to the bottom of what happened in Texas. We want our power back, our water on, and our homes warm. My team and I will continue using all our resources to keep Texans informed and safe,” he added.
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