Sen. Ted Cruz made it very clear to MSNBC that there was no time for “political sniping” while discussing the devastation from Hurricane Harvey.
MSNBC host Katy Tur questioned the Texas Republican on Monday about what critics would see as the hypocrisy of calling for federal aid to help with the effects of this storm while he had voted against a bill that provided aid following Hurricane Sandy in 2012.
“They’re pointing at you and saying you’re asking for money now when you weren’t willing to help the people of the Northeast. What do you have to say to them?” Tur asked Cruz, who was on the ground in Houston.
But the former GOP presidential candidate was not about to play that game with the MSNBC host.
“There’s time for political sniping later. I think our focus needs to be on this crisis, this disaster,” he began, but Tur spoke over him.
“It’s not really political sniping, Senator. These are people who needed money and who needed funding right after that storm,” she said, dramatically. “I covered those people. Many of them, just like those in Houston, lost absolutely everything they owned.”
Cruz pushed back, however, as he laid out the real facts and quickly shut Tur down.
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“The accurate thing to say is that I and a number of others enthusiastically and emphatically supported hurricane relief,” he clarified. “The problem with that particular bill was that it became a $50 billion bill that was filled with unrelated pork.”
But the senator was not done.
“Two-thirds of that bill had nothing to do with Sandy,” Cruz explained about the federal relief package under former President Obama that was supposed to focus on relief for victims of the category 2 storm that severely affected New York and New Jersey.
“It’s not right for politicians to exploit a disaster when people are hurting to pay for their own political wishlist,” he said.
“Disaster relief needs to be focused on the victims of disaster relief,” Cruz concluded, “and I supported that for Sandy, disaster relief there and I would support that anywhere there’s a major disaster without getting distracted by political unnecessary pork spending.”
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