Photos circulating on Twitter Wednesday night purport to show Texas Senator Ted Cruz on a flight to Cancun, Mexico, during the state’s historic disaster.
The images show a man with a striking resemblance to Cruz at an airport and on a plane. Cruz’s office did not respond to a request for comment, but this story will be updated if they do. Other reporters said they had also contacted but received no response.
Some Twitter detectives claimed that they combined a mask, glasses, a ring, tennis shoes and headphones with previous posts on social media. One photo appears to show Cruz’s wife, who has appeared on national television, by his side.
A detective cited clues from a photo that places Cruz inside the Houston International Airport near the terminal for a United flight to Cancun at 4:10 p.m.
Re: the Ted Cruz / Cancun thing, this is the photo that unlocks everything. He’s in a United terminal. At the top left you can see that it is 4:10 pm (or 4:00 pm at least). To the left of that, you can see that you are near gate E11, with your destination in Ft. Lauderdale. (1/3) pic.twitter.com/hUuUqSNBze
– Nesler (@thatnesler) February 18, 2021
Less than an hour later, UA1020 departed for Cancun and landed at 7:52 p.m., online flight logs show.
However, others thought the photos could be taken out of context or from a previous trip. In fact, there is no smoking gun and Cruz has yet to comment.
Among those who shared the photos was a state legislator from Houston, Cruz’s hometown.
“Guess which US Senator from Texas flew to Cancun while the state was freezing and had to boil water,” said State Representative Gene Wu, D-Houston.
Keith Edwards, a Democratic operative who worked on Georgia Senator Jon Ossof’s campaign, tweeted that people on the flight with Cruz had confirmed the accuracy of the photos in direct messages.
Nothing in Cruz’s most recent Twitter timeline mentions travel. He has shared resources for the storm, including information on a warming center in San Antonio and a request for South Texans to donate blood if they can.
Reports of Cruz’s alleged vacation spread quickly on social media, catapulted by frozen frustration from Texans. That after a failure in the state’s electrical grid forced millions in the state to go days without sustained power in sub-zero temperatures. If true, the trip would add even more insult to the wounds of a battered state facing a historic disaster.
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