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Ted Cruz, who fled Texas for Cancún during a winter storm, was mocked for criticizing Democratic lawmakers who left the state to block GOP bills

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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) gestures as he speaks during a news conference on May 12, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Sen. Ted Cruz. Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images
  • Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas slammed Democratic lawmakers who fled the state earlier this week.

  • Texas Democrats accused Cruz of hypocrisy after he fled the state during a deadly storm in February.

  • "I'd sit this one out, Ted," said Julián Castro, a Texas Democrat.

  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas was mocked after he criticized Democratic lawmakers who fled the state in a walkout earlier this week, with several lawmakers pointing out that he flew to Mexico earlier this year to escape a deadly winter storm that was ravaging the state.

On Monday Democrats in the Texas House of Representatives deliberately left the state for Washington, DC, to block Republican priorities - including a bill on voting rights - from passing in a special legislative session.

The move was to deny the legislative quorum needed to move the bills forward: under the Texan constitution, two-thirds of Texas lawmakers must be present for legislative business to proceed.

In a Tuesday interview with Fox News, Cruz called the move a "political stunt" made "in a fit," and said it was "going to fail."

Cruz's comments prompted criticism from current and former lawmakers, accusing him of hypocrisy after he flew from Texas to Cancún, Mexico, to escape a deadly winter storm this February.

He ultimately returned home from the trip several days earlier than planned, and said the decision to fly on vacation was "obviously a mistake."

"If it's one thing Ted Cruz knows about, it's jet setting," said Georgia Rep. Hank Johnson on Twitter in response to Cruz's interview. "Reminds you of when he abandoned his duty to the people of Texas when he left in the middle of a winter storm to go to Cancun."

Julián Castro, another Texas Democrat and a member of former President Barack Obama's cabinet, also tweeted: "Texas Democrats left the state to fight for voting rights. Ted Cruz left the state to sip drinks on a Cancun beach. I'd sit this one out, Ted."

And the Lincoln Project, a group formed by Republicans critical of former President Donald Trump, tweeted: "Ted Cruz knows a thing or two about fleeing Texas."

Texas Democrats
Texas state Rep. Ron Reynolds speaks alongside members of the Texas House Democratic Caucus and voting-rights advocates outside the Texas State Capitol in Austin on July 8, 2021. Tamir Kalifa/Getty Images

The Texas lawmakers who fled the state this week had delayed the introduction of legislation that restricts voting rights, but accept that they cannot stop it from passing eventually, The New York Times reported.

They are lobbying President Joe Biden's administration to pass voting rights-legislation at a federal level after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said he would introduce "special session after special session after special session" until the statewide legislation was passed, The Times reported.

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