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Ted Cruz Tweet Attacking California Energy Policies Resurfaces Amid Texas Power Outages

Newsweek logo Newsweek 2/16/2021 Darragh Roche
Ted Cruz in a suit standing in front of a window: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) walks out of a meeting room for the lawyers of former President Donald Trump and back to the Senate floor through the Senate Reception room on the fourth day of the Senate Impeachment trials for former President Donald Trump on Capitol Hill on February 12, 2021 in Washington, DC. Cruz' tweet from 2020 has resurfaced amid power outages in Texas. © Jabin Botsford - Pool/Getty Images Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) walks out of a meeting room for the lawyers of former President Donald Trump and back to the Senate floor through the Senate Reception room on the fourth day of the Senate Impeachment trials for former President Donald Trump on Capitol Hill on February 12, 2021 in Washington, DC. Cruz' tweet from 2020 has resurfaced amid power outages in Texas.

A tweet sent by Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) in August last year has resurfaced following widespread power outages in Texas in the face of major storms bringing snow and ice to the region.

Social media users have highlighted Cruz's tweet from August 19, 2020 criticizing California's energy policies. At the time, the state was dealing with the first rolling blackouts in 19 years.

"California is now unable to perform even basic functions of civilization, like having reliable electricity," Cruz said.

"Biden/Harris/AOC want to make CA's failed energy policy the standard nationwide. Hope you don't like air conditioning!"

More than 4 million Texans were left without heat on Monday night as the state's electrical grid failed to meet demand in the freezing weather, according to NBC News.

Some homes will likely not have power or heat until at least Tuesday, while the National Weather Service was predicting the coldest night in Houston for 30 years.

Twitter users brought renewed attention to Cruz's 2020 tweet amid the power outage in his home state. The senator has been sharing information about the ongoing weather issues in Texas.

"What were you saying about 'reliable electricity,' Senator?" tweeted Steve Vladeck, Charles Alan Wright Chair in Federal Courts at the University of Texas School of Law.

"Another reminder of the Texas Republican gloating last summer when California lost power," wrote BuzzFeed News investigative reporter Emmanuel Felton.

"Texas is now unable to perform even basic functions of civilization, like having reliable electricity," wrote Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action, a gun safety group.

"Cruz/ [Governor Greg] Abbott/ [Senator John] Cornyn want to make TX's failed energy policy the standard nationwide. Hope you don't like heat!"

"Huh. This sounds familiar," wrote Dan Beucke, enterprise editor for the San Diego Union-Tribune. "ERCOT and utility officials called on Texans to do as much as they can to conserve energy. 'For those who still have power, whether it is commercial, a school, residential, if they can bring their demand for electricity down, that would help us.'"

Cruz's tweet last August shared a post from the office of the governor of California calling on people to conserve energy. As Beucke pointed out, ERCOT (the Electric Reliability Council of Texas) has urged similar measures in the state.

At the time of the California blackouts some Republicans, including then President Donald Trump, associated the state's energy problems with the Green New Deal. However, the blackouts were a result of poor planning and other failures, according to The New York Times.

"It's simply a matter of raw capacity," Steve Berberich, president and chief executive officer of California Independent System Operator (ISO) told the newspaper on August 20.

Cruz has been a strong critic of green and renewable energy and promoted traditional fossil fuels. Texas is a major oil producer.

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