WASHINGTON – Texas Senator Ted Cruz takes heartbreak for Tweeter Wednesday about the “ridiculous fun” he had at a charity poker game last year.
Online critics took issue with the Republican’s tweets as the Uvalde community began planning funerals for the victims of the horrific school shooting last week.
Cruz began by tweeting at noon that he sat in on a Texas Hold’em contest last year that featured famed pro Phil Hellmuth and Texas poker legend Doyle Brunson.
The game is featured on several episodes of a streaming service show called Poker after dark.
“That was awesome!” Cross wroteincluding a link to the first episode, in which he seemed to perform well, taking pots from Hellmuth and Brunson.
He posted again later with a video clip from the episode, which you can watch below.
“Head-to-head against an iconic poker player like (Hellmuth) was ridiculous fun!” Cruz wrote.
In the clip, after raising a bet with a pair of 9s, Cruz jokingly asks Hellmuth if a 7 and a 2 are a good hand (it’s not). Hellmuth says, “Oh boy” and laughs.
“So he talks, so he’s definitely very strong here,” Hellmuth says. “I’m supposed to say ‘Do you know who I am?’ but I don’t think it works against Senator Cruz.
Hellmuth then lies down.
The tweet sparked a flurry of responses from users highlighting the funeral of Uvalde’s shooting victims.
“It’s safe to say there’s so much to be outraged about right now, but given that this senator had 19 kids in his state slaughtered by an AR-15 last week, this tweet just might make the Outrage Hall of Fame”, tweeted the Sleeping Giants campaign, which is pushing companies to remove advertising from conservative outlets.
Safe to say there’s so much to be outraged about right now, but considering this senator had 19 kids in his state slaughtered by an AR-15 last week, this tweet just might get the Outrage Hall. of Fame. https://t.co/zvVBGJZ9RF
— Sleeping Giants (@slpng_giants) June 2, 2022
Cruz was the only Texas politician to speak in person at the NRA leadership forum in Houston last week.
During that speech, Cruz talked about joining a community prayer vigil in Uvalde as the community mourned their untold losses after the shooting.
“None of us will ever truly understand the manifest evil that devastated Uvalde that day,” Cruz said. “The entire state, the entire country, is horrified and in mourning. And it is an evil that has happened too many times.
But Cruz rejected calls for tighter gun restrictions and instead called for making schools safer.
He was confronted later that night by a Sushi restaurant in Houston on his position on gun laws.
Many replies to the video poker tweet included photos of the coffins or the faces of the children killed in the shooting.
Others cited the four people killed Wednesday in a shooting at a Tulsa medical building.
Cruz then posted a follow-up Tweet pointing out that the poker game had been recorded months before while drawing attention to part of the clip in which Hellmuth tells Cruz his hand and Cruz replies that it was a “flip corner”.
Hellmuth then guesses correctly that Cruz was holding a pair of 9s.
“I win this pot, but listen to the end: @phil_hellmuth calls my hand EXACTLY,” Cruz wrote. “Maybe there’s a reason he has 15 bracelets…” presumably referring to Hellmuth’s victories in World Series of Poker events.
This post sparked a new wave of criticism.
“Multiple mass shootings today and Ted Cruz is too busy talking about poker games instead of violence in America,” tweeted Russell Foster, a Democrat who lost a 2020 congressional bid in the 4th District of Washington. Texas.