Cruz Finally Responds To Outrage Over Mid-Disaster Mexico Trip: My Kids Asked For It!

CANCUN, MEXICO - FEBRUARY 18: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) checks in for a flight at Cancun International Airport after a backlash over his Mexican family vacation as his home state of Texas endured a Winter storm on Februar... CANCUN, MEXICO - FEBRUARY 18: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) checks in for a flight at Cancun International Airport after a backlash over his Mexican family vacation as his home state of Texas endured a Winter storm on February 18, 2021 in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico. The Republican politician came under fire after leaving for the warm holiday destination as hundreds of thousands of people in the lone star state suffered a loss of power. Reports stated that Cruz was due to catch a flight back to Houston, Texas. (Photo by MEGA/GC Images) MORE LESS

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) finally responded to the uproar created by his decision to decamp to Mexico while the state that elected him to the Senate weathers a historic disaster.

In short: You know how kids are!

In a statement, Cruz pinned the trip on his children.

“With school cancelled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends,” he said. “Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon.”

Photographers at Cancun International Airport captured images of Cruz checking in midday Thursday, dragging a single piece of luggage in a walk of shame back to the states. The senator wore a tucked-in polo shirt and a mask featuring the Texas state flag.

Cruz didn’t say in his statement whether he originally planned on flying back Thursday — or whether the blossoming outrage at his decision to skip town in the middle of the deadly disaster spurred a last-minute change of plans.

But Edward Russell, an airlines reporter at the travel news website Skift, reported that an unnamed source at United Airlines told him Cruz was originally scheduled to return to Texas on Saturday. Around 6 a.m. on Thursday, Cruz changed plans, rebooking his flight to return Thursday afternoon, Russell reported.

CANCUN, QUINTANA ROO - FEBRUARY 18: Ted Cruz checks in for a flight at Cancun International Airport after a backlash over his Mexican family vacation as his home state of Texas endured a Winter storm. The Republican politician came under fire after jetting to the warm holiday destination as hundreds of thousands of people in the lone star state suffered a loss of power. Reports stated that Cruz was due to catch a flight back to Houston, Texas on February 18, 2021 in Cancun, Quintana Roo. (Photo by MEGA/GC Images)
CANCUN, MEXICO – FEBRUARY 18: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) checks in for a flight at Cancun International Airport after a backlash over his Mexican family vacation as his home state of Texas endured a Winter storm on February 18, 2021 in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico. The Republican politician came under fire after leaving for the warm holiday destination as hundreds of thousands of people in the lone star state suffered a loss of power. Reports stated that Cruz was due to catch a flight back to Houston, Texas. (Photo by MEGA/GC Images)
CANCUN, MEXICO – FEBRUARY 18: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) checks in for a flight at Cancun International Airport after a backlash over his Mexican family vacation as his home state of Texas endured a Winter storm on February 18, 2021 in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico. The Republican politician came under fire after leaving for the warm holiday destination as hundreds of thousands of people in the lone star state suffered a loss of power. Reports stated that Cruz was due to catch a flight back to Houston, Texas. (Photo by MEGA/GC Images)
CANCUN, QUINTANA ROO - FEBRUARY 18: Ted Cruz checks in for a flight at Cancun International Airport after a backlash over his Mexican family vacation as his home state of Texas endured a Winter storm. The Republican politician came under fire after jetting to the warm holiday destination as hundreds of thousands of people in the lone star state suffered a loss of power. Reports stated that Cruz was due to catch a flight back to Houston, Texas on February 18, 2021 in Cancun, Quintana Roo. (Photo by MEGA/GC Images)
CANCUN, MEXICO – FEBRUARY 18: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) checks in for a flight at Cancun International Airport after a backlash over his Mexican family vacation as his home state of Texas endured a Winter storm on February 18, 2021 in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico. The Republican politician came under fire after leaving for the warm holiday destination as hundreds of thousands of people in the lone star state suffered a loss of power. Reports stated that Cruz was due to catch a flight back to Houston, Texas. (Photo by MEGA/GC Images)
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.

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