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As millions of his constituents endured a third day without power and an increasing number faced boil water notices due to winter weather, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz traveled to Mexico on Wednesday for a family vacation—putting himself under a national microscope.


The Republican lawmaker's trip to Cancun was part of "a long-planned trip," according to the Associated Press. Cruz issued a statement Thursday, shared by NBC News' Vaughn Hillyard and others, in which he said that the trip was in response to a request by his daughters, who "asked to take a trip with friends."

Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo confirmed that the senator's staff had contacted the department and asked for assistance "upon the senator's arrival at the airport," according to USA Today. Photos of the Trump ally at the Houston airport circulated on social media on Wednesday.

In November, Cruz was one of many that criticized Austin Mayor Stever Adler after he traveled to Cabo San Lucas amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the midst of his own public relations crisis, the two-term senator faces criticism on either side of the aisle for his travel plans. "That's something that he has to answer to his constituents about," Texas GOP Chairman Allen West told the AP. The Texas Democratic Party called on Cruz to resign, using the hashtag "Cancun Cruz" on social media.

Cruz' current term expires in early 2025, but many speculate that he is contemplating a second run for president in 2024, which would be his second after he failed to earn the GOP nomination in 2016.

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