Sen. Ted Cruz confirmed Thursday that he traveled to Cancun, Mexico, as millions of Texas residents were without power amid blackouts from the freezing weather.
In a statement, the Texas Republican said he flew with his daughters Wednesday and would be returning Thursday amid an uproar and calls to resign over the family trip.
“With school canceled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends. Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon,” Cruz said.
Photos that rapidly circulated on social media overnight showed a man who could be the senator at an airport and on an airplane. In some photos, a gray face mask was visible that appeared to be similar to one that Cruz was wearing at President Biden’s inauguration.
According to the social media postings, Cruz appeared to be in the Houston airport, preparing to board a United Airlines flight from Houston to Fort Lauderdale with continuing service to Cancun.
In Texas, more than 3 million customers were still in the dark Wednesday afternoon, according to poweroutage.us, which tracks outages nationwide. As of Thursday morning, that figure was about 500,000.
The Texas Democratic Party called on Cruz to resign over the incident. In a statement, party Chairman Gilberto Hinojosa said Cruz “is proving to be an enemy to our state by abandoning us in our greatest time of need.”
“Ted Cruz jetting off to Mexico while Texans remain dying in the cold isn’t surprising but it is deeply disturbing and disappointing,” Hinojosa said. “Cruz is emblematic of what the Texas Republican Party and its leaders have become: weak, corrupt, inept, and self-serving politicians who don’t give a damn about the people they were elected to represent. They were elected by the people but have no interest or intent of doing their jobs.”