Sen. Ted Cruz headed back to Houston, Texas on Thursday (Feb. 18) after facing backlash for leaving his state during a deadly winter storm to go on vacation with his family.
On Wednesday night (Feb. 17), photos surfaced on social media showing Cruz and his family in a Houston airport waiting for their flight to Cancun, as hundreds of thousands of Texas residents struggled to survive without electricity, shelter, food and water. Hours after photos surfaced, the Senator released a statement. He said it has been an “infuriating week for Texans” and his family had “lost heat and power too.”
“With school cancelled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends,” Cruz continued. “Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon. My staff and I are in constant communication with state and local leaders to get to the bottom of what happened in Texas.”
“We want our power back, our water on and our homes warm. My team and I will continue using all our resources to keep Texans informed and safe,” he added. However, Cruz did not apologize for his actions.
Hundreds of thousands of people in Texas are still without power. State officials issued a boil water advisory for more than seven million people, as the water’s been deemed unsafe to drink.
Cruz’s trip drew criticism from both Democrats and Republicans in Texas and across the nation. “That’s something that he has to answer to his constituents about,” state Republican Party Chairman Allen West said when asked whether the Senator’s travel was appropriate during the winter storm. “I’m here trying to take care of my family and look after my friends and others that are still without power. That’s my focus.”
Check out Cruz’s full statement below.