Senator Ted Cruz, a 2016 presidential hopeful, now faces a tough situation as his home state of Texas is ravaged by Hurricane Harvey. Cruz and other prominent Texas Republicans in Congress once vociferously opposed a bill to assist a number of Northeastern states after Hurricane Sandy. Now that disaster has struck in his state and he is calling for assistance, a number of Senators are calling out his hypocrisy.
“The congressional members in Texas are hypocrites, and I said back in 2012 they’d be proven to be hypocrites. It was just a matter of time,” said New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. “We were the disaster that was the longest in waiting in terms of federal aid, and I hope that’s not what happens to the folks in Texas.”
Christie’s sentiment was echoed by a number of other Northeastern legislators. “Despite my TX colleagues refusal to support aid in #SouthJersey time of need, I will support emergency disaster $$ for those impacted,” tweeted Frank LoBiondo, a Republican representative also from New Jersey. “Ted Cruz & Texas cohorts voted vs NY/NJ aid after Sandy but I’ll vote 4 Harvey aid. NY wont abandon Texas. 1 bad turn doesn’t deserve another,” added New York Republican representative Peter King.
“The United States Senate should not be in the business of exploiting victims of natural disasters to fund pork projects that further expand our debt,” said Cruz at the time of Hurricane Sandy. He accused legislators at the time of smuggling other spending measures into the Sandy relief bill. Regardless, the result was that he appeared heartless in the face of national disaster. This is the charge that has frustrated a number of Northeastern legislators this time around.
When asked about his stance this week, Cruz doubled down on his claim. He said the Hurricane Sandy relief bill was indeed stuffed “with unrelated pork,” whereas this Harvey relief bill is different.