It doesn’t seem like Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is prepared to formally apologize for a decision to depart to Cancun while millions in his state fought freezing temperatures without electricity or running water amid the state’s winter storm damage.
Without apologizing for the move, the Texas senator appeared on Fox News on Thursday night to let viewers know that he had “second thoughts” about the trip pretty quickly.
Cruz: I had initially planned to stay through the weekend pic.twitter.com/EgxxnBXCXW
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) February 19, 2021
“I had initially planned to stay through the weekend and to work remotely there but as I was heading down there, you know, I started to have second thoughts almost immediately,” Cruz told Fox News of his Mexico trip. “Because the crisis here in Texas — you need to be here on the ground.”
Never apologize — it was a routine tactic of former President Donald Trump and a notion that seems to have outlived his presidency.
“As much as you can do by phone and Zoom, it’s not the same as being here,” Cruz said, appearing to praise himself for sacrificing a portion of his trip. “And so, I returned this afternoon and I’m here working to make sure that we do everything we can to get the power turned on.”
According to the Washington Post, Cruz’s original return trip was scheduled for Saturday but he got rebooked on a flight out Thursday afternoon.
Perhaps not wanting his constituents to think he had entirely avoided the outage as he skipped town, Cruz related his own experience during the Fox News interview, telling host Sean Hannity that he and his family had also lost power.
“We had a candlelight dinner, because that’s all we had,” Cruz said.
“It got cold, I mean, it was in the 30s and the house as it got cold. And it stayed with no power for two days,” he added.
In a statement earlier on Thursday Cruz opted to turn down a similar opportunity to apologize for fleeing the crisis, instead heaping blame for the trip on his young daughters.
“With school cancelled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends,” Cruz wrote earlier on Thursday. “Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon.”
The statement — which cast him in the light of fatherliness — did not appear to reveal much contrition for the getaway plan.
Cruz yet again avoided apologizing for the beach escape when he was approached by reporters during the debacle Thursday, calling the move a “mistake,” but falling short of apologizing for the decision.
“It was obviously a mistake,” he said. “In hindsight, I wouldn’t have done it.”
Sen. Ted Cruz, back in Texas, says it was "obviously a mistake" to go to Cancun.
You can hear protestors chanting "Resign!" in the background. pic.twitter.com/FwA6Dsg4fv
— The Recount (@therecount) February 19, 2021
During the Fox News interview on Thursday, Hannity rushed to boost Cruz for being “a father” while also trying to suggest that remote work has become the norm during the COVID-19 pandemic and should equally serve as an excuse for Cruz.
“I thought we learned during COVID that teleschool, telemedicine, teleworking, Zoom calls — all this other stuff — changed the way we do everything,” Hannity said. “Now, I’m not assuming that the people of Texas thought you were going to go out there with blowtorches and antifreeze and get the wind turbines going…”
No, of course not.