Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) has been walking on thin ice in recent days over a winter getaway to a Cancun resort that turned into a total public relations fiasco.
The Texas senator is facing pressure to resign after he admitted to making a “mistake” by flying to Mexico in the middle of a historic storm that left millions of his fellow Texans without power, The Hill reports.
Back to Texas
Images first surfaced Wednesday evening of Cruz boarding a plane to Mexico with his family. As soon as the trip was publicized, it was criticized as inappropriate given the conditions in Texas.
Cruz would not be out of the cold 24 hours before the controversy forced his whiplash return.
Although the Republican had briefly avoided the winter storm, he returned home to a political whirlwind Thursday afternoon as protesters gathered outside his home demanding his resignation, reports noted.
“Obviously a mistake”
The senator expressed regret and acknowledged that the vacation was a “mistake,” but said he was “trying to be a dad” to his two daughters.
“Whether the decision to go was tone deaf? Look, it was obviously a mistake. In hindsight, I wouldn’t have done it,” Cruz said, according to The Hill. “I was trying to be a dad.”
The senator went on: “All of us have made decisions — when you got two girls who have been cold for two days and haven’t had heat or power and they’re saying, ‘Hey look, we don’t have school, why don’t we go. Let’s get out of here.’”
Cruz in a tough spot
Adding to Cruz’s woes, leaked texts surfaced from his wife Heidi’s group chat in which she encouraged friends to come along on their trip, referring to the “FREEZING” conditions at home, according to the New York Post.
Texas Democrats are also pressing the matter. “The Texas Democratic Party calls on Ted Cruz to resign or be expelled from office,” state Democratic Party Chairman Gilberto Hinojosa said in a statement, The Hill reported.
As of Friday, the number of those without power was down to about 180,000 from a peak of around 4 million earlier in the week, according to USA Today. But millions are still having problems accessing clean water, and the storm has reportedly killed dozens in Texas and across the South.
In the meantime, some have suggested that there is a double standard in the media coverage of the Cruz Cancun controversy and the relatively muted reaction to the nursing home scandal that is currently engulfing New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D).