The firebrand Republican senator, who earlier this year was embroiled in controversy after it was reported that he traveled to Mexico for a family vacation amid a devastating winter storm that left millions in his state without power, now faces similar criticism after tweeting a video of himself inside an Israeli home damaged by rocket fire.
In the video, Mr Cruz discussed the death of an elderly woman’s caretaker in Ashkalon, Israel, resulting from a Hamas rocket strike that hit a residential home. Mr Cruz gives a brief tour of the damage in the home, and explains how the elderly resident was able to make it out of the home in time.
“I’m in Israel and I'm seeing the results of Hamas terrorism. A Hamas rocket destroyed this home and killed an elderly woman's caretaker,” reads the video’s caption.
Under the video, the senator was excoriated by angry Texas residents who demanded to know why he had not reacted similarly to the devastation wrought by the winter storms that largely shut down the state’s power grid in February.
“How much is this photo op costing us, Rafael? Did I miss the tour of frozen Texas homes?” wrote one commenter, who referred to the senator’s given name.
Yes, it’s a tragedy. Yet there you are, using this sad event for political gain.— Charles Henry Wolf (@charles_h_wolf) June 1, 2021
“Hey Ted, I missed the tour of Texas homes destroyed by frozen pipe bursts,” added another Texan.
Other commenters accused the senator of using the recent conflict in the Gaza Strip for his own political gain.
The Independent has reached out to Cruz’s office for comment.
In February, the senator told reporters it was a “mistake” for him to leave his home state while it was recovering from damaging winter weather. No such weather was present across the state on Tuesday, as Texans and many other Americans returned to work following the Memorial Day holiday on Monday.
“It was obviously a mistake. In hindsight, I wouldn’t have done it,” Mr Cruz said at the time.
“I was trying to be a dad,” he added to reporters. “And 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.’ "
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