Senator Ted Cruz of Texas remains in hot water after he got caught heading with his family to Cancún as millions in the state had no power or drinkable water during a freak snow storm. Cruz admitted it was a mistake, but the controversy isn't going away.
The embattled senator first claimed he was merely escorting his family to a vacation and coming right back, but was caught in a lie after leaked text messages surfaced from his wife Heidi that appeared to show the entire family was planning to stay through the weekend.
“Our house is freezing! Anyone can or want to leave for the week?” Heidi texted friends and neighbors in a group chat labeled “lovelies.” “We may go to Cancún...seriously!” she said.
Heidi said the prospective flights were leaving Wednesday and returning Sunday. The family planned to stay in the Ritz Carlton, with a $309 per night price tag.
Slammed by outraged citizens, Cruz changed his flight and came right back home, where he was accompanied by a police escort. Protesters outside his house called on him to resign.
Cruz looked contrite as he faced tough questions from reporter Tom Abrahams of Houston’s ABC13.
“First question, what were you thinking?” Abrahams asked Cruz.
“Our girls found out that school was cancelled. So we had no school for the rest of the week and they said, ‘Look, let’s take a trip,’” Cruz said. “Your question — what I was thinking — I was trying to take care of my family,” Cruz said.
“As a leader you need to be here. And you need to be here when Texans were hurting, and that’s why I didn’t feel good about it even as we were heading out. I knew why we said yes, but I was thinking it was a mistake almost from the outset.”
Now Cruz is facing more outrage for appearing to leave the family’s miniature poodle, Snowflake, behind. The dog was spotted by a reporter peering forlorn out the front window. Apparently a security guard was taking care of him.