Texas Senator Ted Cruz is under fire as unverified images circulated on Twitter appearing to show him taking a flight out of the storm-ravaged state.
As of early Thursday, no media outlet had reported a response from Cruz. But Fox News, citing an unnamed GOP source, reported that he had indeed made the trip .
The images appear to have been first shared by Twitter user Juan Gomez although its not clear whether he took the pictures.
— Juan Gomez (@Juan_Gomez18) February 18, 2021
David Schuster, a former MSNBC journalist, later tweeted that he had “confirmed” that Cruz and his family had flown to Cancun on Wednesday night “for a few days at a resort they’ve visited before.” Without details of how or with whom he confirmed the details.
Just confirmed @SenTedCruz and his family flew to Cancun tonight for a few days at a resort they've visited before. Cruz seems to believe there isn't much for him to do in Texas for the millions of fellow Texans who remain without electricity/water and are literally freezing. pic.twitter.com/6nPiVWtdxe
— David Shuster (@DavidShuster) February 18, 2021
Keith Edwards, a former advisor to Democratic Sen. Jon Ossoff and who was previously involved with the anti-Trump Lincoln Project, posted other images which he said were sent to him by someone who saw Cruz on their flight to Cancun.
He also posted a picture which he said showed Cruz in the airport around 35 minutes before the flight to Cancun:
Hey Kathy — that screenshot was sent to me by the person who took the photos, showing the time taken was today.
Two people in my DMs sent photos of Ted on their flight today from Cancun.
The guy standing in the hat on the left pic is also the guy taking the picture on the right pic.twitter.com/KkAsOZfbzX
— Keith Edwards (@keithedwards) February 18, 2021
San Antonio ABC affiliate KSAT ran a story Wednesday night asking whether Cruz had gone to Cancun.
The outlet noted that United flight UA1020 departed Houston for Cancun at 4:44 p.m. – 34 minutes after the time shown in that picture.
Beto O’Rourke, the Democrat who lost to Cruz for his Senate seat in 2018, gestured to the speculation on Thursday morning.
In an interview with MSNBC, O’Rourke attacked Cruz, describing him as “the junior Senator from Texas, who I understand is vacationing in Cancun right now when people are literally freezing to death in the state that he was elected to represent and serve.”
Cruz and other Texas Republicans were already under fierce attack for failing to prepare for the catastrophic winter storm and Arctic blast that has virtually brought state to its knees.
Republican Gov. Greg Abbott and his allies are accused of ignoring warnings that the state’s power grid was highly vulnerable to a brutal winter storm.
About 600,000 remain without power as temperatures struggled to get back above the freezing mark. At least 37 have been killed across the south.
The lights could be out for days or even weeks as Texas’s outmatched power companies are overwhelmed with ice, snow and cold.