HOUSTON (CBSDFW.COM/CNN) – Background research shows Senator Ted Cruz, who is facing backlash for traveling to Mexico as a deadly winter storm ravages his home state of Texas, has repeatedly criticized politicians who vacationed or took part in leisure activities during times of crisis.

This past December, Cruz attacked Austin Mayor Steve Adler for going to Cabo, Mexico, during the coronavirus pandemic.

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“Hypocrites. Complete and utter hypocrites. And don’t forget @MayorAdler who took a private jet with eight people to Cabo and WHILE IN CABO recorded a video telling Austinites to ‘stay home if you can…this is not the time to relax,'” tweeted Cruz in December.

Cruz is now facing criticism of his own for traveling to Cancún, Mexico, from Houston with his family Wednesday night as a winter storm left millions of Texans without power, heat or water and disrupted the state’s efforts to distribute the coronavirus vaccine.

The Senator allegedly said the vacation was a last-minute plan after power went out at his family’s Houston home. “We had spent two days without power and my girls wanted to take a trip with their friends and frankly get somewhere where it was warmer.”

Cruz had initially seemed to indicate that he was only dropping off his family in Mexico and the next day, but he now admits he had planned to stay in Cancun through the weekend and work remotely. He later said “leaving when so many Texans were hurting didn’t feel right, and so I changed my return flight and flew back on the first available flight.”

On Thursday a group of protestors gathered outside Cruz’s home holding signs that read “RESIGN” and “Cancun Cruz.”

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(credit: KRIV/Newspath)

Cruz has attacked public officials for vacationing or golfing during times of crisis and argued that it showed those officials were not paying attention.

Cruz said in 2017 then-New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie “should go back to the beach,” referencing the outrage surrounding the governor’s trip to a closed state beach with his family while the state’s government was shut down.

Cruz was responding to criticism and charges of hypocrisy from Christie after his request for federal aid for Texas in response to Hurricane Harvey. Cruz had opposed an aid package in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, which largely affected the northeast.

In a speech in 2015, Cruz said “if the only terrorists attacked a golf course, that might actually get the White House’s attention. Holy cow, this is serious!”

In 2014, Cruz attacked then-President Barack Obama for attending a fundraiser during a crisis at the border in Texas and said the President spent too much time on the golf course.

“I think the President should actually stand up and do his job as commander-in-chief, should spend less time on the golf course and more time doing the job to which he was elected,” Cruz told reporters in Iowa in August 2014, when asked about the President vacationing in Martha’s Vineyard.

A month earlier, during an appearance on Fox News in July, Cruz called Obama an “absentee president,” who was “not focused on the people who are hurting.”

“He’s going to two major fundraisers where he wants to be with wealthy Democratic donors, but apparently, he doesn’t have time to actually go and see the border, he doesn’t have time to see the children who are suffering because of his failed policies,” Cruz said. “Earlier, he was playing pool. Apparently playing a game of pool is a higher priority for this President than it would be to go and see the humanitarian crisis he’s created.

Houston’s Democratic Mayor Sylvester Turner said “it’s certainly much warmer where he’s going,” when asked about Cruz’s trip south of the border during a briefing on the winter disaster.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott, a Republican, declined to comment saying, “I haven’t been following people’s vacation plans.”

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CBSDFW.com Staff