Cruz On Carson’s ‘Dirty Trick’ Claim: I’m Not Gonna Scapegoat My Staff

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) on Wednesday said he would not discipline any campaign staffers for notifying Iowa caucusgoers that Ben Carson had plans to drop out of the race even though the retired neurosurgeon only had plans for a quick trip home to Florida.

Cruz said on “The Mike Gallagher Show” that members of his campaign were “passing on news reports.”

“I don’t make a practice of scapegoating staff members when it’s politically convenient,” Cruz added.

The Texas senator reiterated that he has apologized to Carson for his campaign’s actions. In a Tuesday statement, Cruz said that while sharing news reports is “fair game,” he was sorry his campaign did not send out an update clarifying that Carson would remain in the race. The Cruz campaign circulated a CNN story about Carson’s plans to head to Florida following the Iowa caucus, and the campaign allegedly urged caucusgoers to vote for Cruz instead.

On Wednesday, Cruz told Gallagher that the media was reporting on Carson’s claims and the Cruz campaign’s actions in a “misleading way.”

Shortly before Cruz’s interview on “The Mike Gallagher Show,” Donald Trump accused Cruz of “fraud” and called for “either a new election should take place or Cruz results nullified.”

In response to Trump’s accusations, Cruz spokesman Rick Tyler told CNN that Trump was merely trying to get attention.

“The reality hit the reality TV star in Iowa so nobody is talking about him now. So he’s trying to regain some attention on Twitter,” he said in a statement to CNN.

Tyler added that “there are Twitter addiction support groups, so he should seek out his local chapter.”

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

TPM Staff
Latest Livewire
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: