Senator Ted Cruz seems confused about what constitutes “hypocrisy” and what doesn’t. His recent tropical getaway to Cancún only two days into his state’s power and water crisis left even his friends aghast, striking an even lower bar for Cruz when the bar is pretty low already.
Cruz attacked Democrat Mayor Stephen Adler of Austin not too long ago in December for taking a trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, while telling his constituents to “stay home” during the pandemic.
This week Cruz took a trip to Cancún, Mexico, at the start of a severe state weather crisis on top of a pandemic, after urging his constituents via a radio interview on Monday to “Keep your family safe and just stay home.” Back in December, Ted Cruz said in a tweet of Mayor Adler, “Hypocrites. Complete and utter hypocrites.
Cruz is the Senator of the second largest state in the country and resides in Houston — the hardest hit — the fourth largest city in the country.
I’m in Austin, TX, right now. A few weeks before the storm, I drove from California trying to escape the usually cold 55-degree weather in Los Angeles to be with my immediate family. I have seen first-hand what Cruz’s constituents are going through. My family has been lucky, we only lost hot water for two days, but friends around Austin have lost heat and water and can’t jump on a plane to Cancún, with a police escort to the airport and stay at the Ritz Carlton on the beach for a week while things blow over.
There are so many things wrong with this, it is hard to know where to begin.
The first being, we are in the middle of a pandemic, and air travel should be restricted to only necessary travel, especially for a Senator — who should be the example.
Millions of Texans still do not have electricity or running water. As recently as yesterday, the state sent out text alerts warning that water must be boiled before drinking. How the hell are people supposed to boil water without electricity?
As Rachel Maddow on TRMS last Wednesday put it so brilliantly, “Texans have unregulated themselves into a power crisis.” The state that doesn’t want Big Government to “interfere” and regulate things, like their power grid, now finds itself without power or water during freezing temperatures.
Texans, who love to pride themselves on being better and different from every other state, especially California, have at least succeeded on the latter. People are boiling water outside over campfires as their only option for drinking water. One woman stored water in her bathtub for her family.
Friends’ pipes have burst because of the freezing temperatures while the Texas Senator was planning a week in Cancun during a pandemic. My sister, who has been a resident of Austin for more than two decades, is housing two families, including her own.
Cruz sheepishly turned around once he got to Cancún — that 2024 bid for the presidency looming in his pea-size, little brain — when confronted by the press about his trip, in only Cruz-style-fashion, he blamed his 10 and 12-year-old daughters for his lapse in judgment. If you’ve been paying attention to Cruz’s career for the last eight years, you know this blame-shifting is on-brand for him. The Senator doesn’t know what taking responsibility looks like. He only knows how to point fingers at other people, even if those other people are his own pre-teen children.
I have a teen. She has asked me several times over the last year to go on a vacation since being couped up with me 24/7. I simply respond, “no, we have to wait until it is safe to travel. We’re trying to smother a virus by staying in and limiting contact.” You know why? Because I’m the adult in our relationship.
I’m trying to impart to her we have to look out for the larger community and those most vulnerable. Sometimes that requires sacrifice.
Not even 24 hours into the crisis, Cruz’s wife, Heidi, sent text messages to neighbors and friends saying their home was “FREEZING” and wanted to get away somewhere warm, inviting friends along to stay at the Ritz ($309 per night). None agreed to go with them, probably because it’s a d bag move.
Even Cruz’s friends couldn’t believe the couple and their two girls and their friends were taking a tropical trip during the state’s power failure. Someone leaked the private text messages to The New York Times.
To make the situation seems less severe than it is, in a statement on Thursday, Cruz (after he was photographed at the Houston airport wearing a Texas state flag mask and a short-sleeved polo shirt) begins, “This has been an infuriating week for Texans.”
Infuriating isn’t the word I would use. Disastrous, life-threatening for those without means and gross negligence from local and state leaders describe what is happening in Texas. Infuriating is a word you use when your Senator leaves for a tropical vacation two days into a state emergency.
In direct contrast, The Biden-Harris Administration *before* the first big snow dump, when temperatures were dropping and predicted to drop farther, ordered federal assistance to supplement state and local response efforts.
How do you like big Government now y’all?
Biden authorized the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to coordinate all disaster relief efforts to alleviate the hardship and suffering on the local population to provide appropriate assistance for Texans’ public health and safety. Something Cruz should have been in Texas coordinating, and not from a beach in Cancún.
This is an excellent example of why who we vote for president matters, sometimes, especially at the state level.
Texas didn’t get paper towels thrown at them — à la Trump’s “effort” to help Puerto Rico after a category 4 hurricane. Texans are getting much-needed aid when the state is in serious trouble from a president who cares about the people he is in service to rather than a photo-op.
Yet another excuse.
Once caught by the press, when Cruz landed in the Cancún airport he did a literal 180 and returned to the U.S., offering yet another explanation saying the trip was “obviously a mistake” and had begun having “second thoughts.”
Cruz continues to show us the moral bar can get lower, and the hypocrisy can run deeper.
As Texas Democrat Party chairman, Mr. Hinojosa, said, “this is about as callous as any politician can get. He’s a politician that really has never cared much about anybody but himself.”
Former Democratic congressman Beto O’Rourke, who nearly beat Cruz in 2018 for his Senate seat, had the best response on MSNBC,
The only thing I’ve ever agreed with Lindsey Graham about was when he joked during a 2016 speech of Cruz, “If you killed Ted Cruz on the floor of the Senate, and the trial was in the Senate, nobody would convict you.”
The man is a few layers below pond scum.
Lizzie Fletcher, a Democratic Representative who represents Cruz’s Houston neighborhood in Congress, said of the crisis, it’s an “all-hands-on-deck situation.” Unlike Cruz, she’s been busy making phone calls from her car — the only place she can charge her phone — calling the House speaker, FEMA, and other agencies to help her constituents.
The Monday before the Cruz family booked their trip to Cancún, Cruz said that the state could see up to 100 deaths per week in a radio interview. “So don’t risk it,” he said, “keep your family safe and just stay home and hug your kids.”
Heidi Cruz and their two daughters will be returning from Cancún on Sunday.
Many Texans still don’t have heat and drinking water, store shelves are empty, with lines around the block with two-hour waits at the bare minimum.
How not to accept responsibility and not act like an adult:
- Leave your state in crisis.
- Blame your pre-teens when you get caught.
- Say it was a mistake, yet offer no apology.
- Have Republicans blame Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the Green New Deal for your state’s power failures, not true and an absurd blame-shifting. The Green New Deal isn’t even legislation.
Texas failures: Texas had its power supply deregulated back in the 1990s. Because these businesses (thermal-powered plants like coal fire power plants, nuclear units, etc.) focus on profits, they are not concerned about maintenance and/or winterizing the equipment for worse case scenarios, like Texas is in right now. Texas is the only state that uses its own independent power grid, which means it does not have federal regulations that might have better prepared Texas for an event it currently finds itself in. Texas failed at a state level. They are being bailed out at the federal level.
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Jessica is a writer, an online entrepreneur, and a recovering perfectionist. She lives in Los Angeles with her extrovert daughter, two dogs, and two cats.