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.
Matt Shuham (@mattshuham)
is a reporter in TPM’s New York office. Prior to joining TPM, he was associate editor of The National Memo and an editorial intern at Rolling Stone.