Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz was widely mocked online after he attempted to call out Democratic President Joe Biden for visiting St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands as much of the country dealt with the impacts of a severe winter storm.
Cruz's critics were quick to remind him he abandoned Texans when he went on vacation to Mexico during a winter storm that ravaged much of Texas in early 2021. Cruz later blamed his daughters.
Indeed, Cruz faced considerable national backlash after he flew to Cancún while millions of people went without food and water as a result of the February 2021 Texas power disaster. At least 246 people were killed directly or indirectly; some estimates suggested as many as 702 people were killed as a result of the crisis.
Cruz, with no sense of irony or self-awareness whatsoever, told Biden to "Enjoy St. Croix" in response to a tweet from the conservative publication The Post Millennial.
Soon after, Stacey Plaskett—the delegate to the United States House of Representatives from the Virgin Islands' at-large congressional district—replied to Cruz with the following comeback:
"A little education because you don’t always act like you have one: St Croix is part of the US. Cancun is NOT."
Other social media users also took Cruz to task for his blatant hypocrisy.
Cruz has refused to take responsibility for his actions despite the criticisms about his ill-advised Cancún trip.
In an interview shortly after the controversy erupted with conservative radio host Dana Loesch, Cruz blamed criticism on "Trump withdrawal," implying that any and all criticism of his behavior amounted to little more than political histrionics because of former Republican President Donald Trump's absence from the news cycle.
Cruz suggested that Trump "broke the media," accusing media outlets of merely wanting "to engage in political attacks." He claimed he went to Cancún to accompany his daughters, an apology that did not sit well with his critics either.
He insisted that his only faux pas had been simply "wanting to be a good dad," claiming he'd only accompanied them for a single night before flying back to Texas. However, Cruz’s social media accounts had not acknowledged any official travel.
Although Cruz has continued to claim that the idea to go on the trip came from his daughters, his claim has not held up under scrutiny.
The New York Times later published text messages obtained from the inner circle of Cruz and his wife Heidi. They showed that Heidi Cruz messaged her friends to tell them that the Cruz home was “FREEZING” and that the family would be staying with friends to ride out the disaster.
When she asked if anyone wanted to head to Cancún for a week, no one answered.
Cruz later said that his wife was “pissed” about the leaked text messages, adding that those who handed their private communications to reporters should learn to "treat each other as human beings" and "have some degree, some modicum of respect.”