Cruz Returns to Texas Facing Criticism After Cancun Trip
(Bloomberg) — Senator Ted Cruz returned to Texas after coming below harsh criticism for flying to Cancun, Mexico, along with his household whereas the state he represents is coping with widespread energy outages in the wake of a historic winter storm.In a video of an alternate with reporters after his return, he mentioned that the journey was “obviously a mistake. In hindsight, I wouldn’t have done it.”He added the impetus for the journey was as a result of his kids had been chilly. “I was trying to be a dad. And all of us have made decisions, when you’ve got two girls who’ve been cold for two days and haven’t had heat or power and they’re saying, ‘Hey look, we don’t have school, why don’t we go, let’s get out of here,’ I think there are a lot of parents that’d be like, all right, if I can do this, great.’”Cruz, in the video posted on Twitter by a Washington Post video editor, mentioned he started second guessing his resolution to depart Texas as soon as he received on the aircraft.In an announcement earlier in the day, he asserted that “my staff and I are in constant communication with state and local leaders to get to the bottom of what happened in Texas.”The assertion got here a number of hours after photos of Cruz at Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport circulated on social media, and after the Houston police confirmed that his employees had asked for the division’s assist for his departure on Wednesday.“A member of his staff reached out to the police department asking for assistance yesterday regarding his arrival at Terminal A,” Houston Police spokeswoman Jodi Silva mentioned.The journey triggered outrage and criticism from Democrats as about 500,000 houses and companies in Texas remained with out electrical energy Thursday morning after a extreme winter storm pummeled the state for days. That’s down from greater than 3 million on Wednesday.More than 7 million Texans are below orders to boil water after energy failures robbed utilities of the capability to maintain pumping, which allowed pressure to drop to ranges at which micro organism might proliferate. The bitter chilly burst pipes in homes constructed for 100-degree summers, and temperatures aren’t anticipated to get a lot above freezing till Saturday for many of the state.The Senate has been in recess since Saturday when Cruz was amongst those that voted to acquit former President Donald Trump of the impeachment cost of inciting the Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol.Cruz has been an outspoken defender of the former president, regardless that the two clashed throughout the 2016 presidential marketing campaign once they had been each looking for the Republican nomination. Cruz, who could be up for re-election in 2024, is one in every of a number of GOP senators weighing a bid for the Republican presidential nomination that yr.The Democratic Party of Texas known as on Cruz to resign Thursday for leaving his constituents in the center of a catastrophe.“Ted Cruz jetting off to Mexico while Texans remain dying in the cold isn’t surprising but it is deeply disturbing and disappointing,” state get together chair Gilberto Hinojosa mentioned in an announcement.Former San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, who was Housing and Urban Development secretary in the Obama administration, mentioned in a tweet that members of Congress “play a critical role connecting their constituents to emergency services and assistance. @tedcruz should be on the phone with federal agencies, not on a trip to Mexico.”Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, a Democrat, mentioned “it’s certainly much warmer where he’s going,” when asked about Cruz’s journey throughout a media briefing on the metropolis’s winter-storm response on Thursday.Cruz has been crucial of Democratic leaders who haven’t adopted their very own pointers to sluggish the unfold of the coronavirus. In December he tweeted criticism of Austin Mayor Steve Adler for telling the metropolis’s residents to remain dwelling whereas he was on trip.As a part of the nationwide response to the lethal winter storm, President Joe Biden declared a state of emergency in Texas and different states that have been affected.At the White House, press secretary Jen Psaki mentioned the administration is centered on working with state officers in addressing the disaster “and we expect that would be the focus of anyone in the state or surrounding states, who was elected to represent them.”Texas Governor Greg Abbott, a Republican, mentioned Wednesday he was limiting out-of-state gross sales of gasoline by means of Feb. 21 to make sure in-state energy mills had ample provides. Less than 24 hours later, Texas’s high power regulator informed gasoline producers to supply provides on the market in-state earlier than delivery it elsewhere, citing the governor’s mandate.“We will continue to exhaust all available methods to restore power for Texans and ensure that our communities can recover,” Abbott mentioned.The White House mentioned in an announcement Thursday evening that Biden and Abbott had spoken by phone and the president “reiterated that the federal government will continue to work hand-in-hand with state and local authorities in Texas to bring relief and address the critical needs of the families affected.” (Updates with White House assertion, in last paragraph. A earlier model corrected the spelling of San Antonio in the thirteenth paragraph.)For extra articles like this, please go to us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to remain forward with the most trusted enterprise information supply.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.