Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) must be getting desperate in his re-election bid for the Senate.
Now he’s even falsely claiming his Democratic opponent, U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, wants to ban Texans from barbecuing.
The senator made the comments at a Saturday rally in Columbus after PETA showed up hoping to gather bipartisan support for Texas tofu since soybeans are a big cash crop for the state’s farmers.
Yesterday, PETA supporters gathered outside of Sen. Ted Cruz’s campaign event in #Texas and handed out samples of barbecued tofu 😋 Tofu is versatile, healthy, and grown right in the Lone Star State, and if Cruz knew this we’re sure he’d want to see tofu in every Texas pot! pic.twitter.com/jywKI0yhKL— PETA (@peta) September 16, 2018
However, Cruz decided PETA’s presence was adversarial and falsely claimed that O’Rourke’s election would lead to barbecue bans across the state to the crowd.
“When I got here someone told me that even PETA was protesting and giving out barbecued tofu, so I got to say, they summed up the entire election: If Texas elects a Democrat, they’re going to ban barbecue across the state of Texas,” Cruz said, according to the Austin American-Statesman.
He doubled down on the unproven allegation Sunday on Twitter.
.@peta protested our town hall yesterday, handing out barbecued tofu. We were glad to welcome them, but it illustrates the stakes af the election: if Beto wins, BBQ will be illegal! 😂😂😂 https://t.co/L1ILod6EST— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) September 16, 2018
Although the laughing-till-I-cry emojis in the tweet were apparently supposed to signify the senator was joking when he claimed O’Rourke would ban barbecue, Cruz spokeswoman Catherine Frazier admits she had lots of press inquiries from reporters wanting clarity.
It’s amazing the number of follow up questions (from employed reporters) this generated asking if Ted really thinks Beto would make BBQ illegal. C’mon people, lighten up! https://t.co/xWjXG3Gy5n— Catherine Frazier (@catblackfrazier) September 18, 2018
Joking or not, many Twitter users definitely had a beef with Cruz’s attempt at a rib tickler.
Protest? They are handing out food.Beto wasn’t even there. How could he make meat consumption illegal? Get off the stage. You aren’t funny.— Commander Shran (@shrantheman) September 17, 2018
The “steaks” of the election: Beto’s not gonna take away your BBQ, but Cruz is absolutely going to take away your healthcare.— Eelailatan (@Eelailatan) September 17, 2018
Desperate enough to try to blame Beto for Peta? And to lie about banning BBQ? What won’t you lie about, Ted?— Helen O’Peel (@HelenofPeel) September 18, 2018
It’s the latest false food claim Cruz has made against O’Rourke. Earlier this month, Cruz told a crowd at a campaign rally that Democrats are raising “millions of dollars” to transform Texas into California with its “tofu, silicon and dyed hair.”
Some people felt that a guy who would make false claims about his opponent’s feelings of barbecue might also be unscrupulous enough to raise funds by sending voters envelopes designed to look like court summonses ― which Cruz did, according to CBS News.
You sent out “begging for money “ letters disguised as court summons… what kind of low life asshole does that? Oh yeah….. ^^^^— “Heather” (@Justheatheralla) September 17, 2018
One woman pointed out that every second Cruz spent on fake barbecue bans was one where he wouldn’t offer ideas or solutions on real issues affecting voters.
Ha, that’s a good one… Honestly, what’s your plan to cover pre-existing conditions? What are your plans to make college more affordable, to make our schools more safe? What actions have you taken to help our veterans? What exactly have you done the last 6 years for Texans?— Janet Janssen (@janetjanssen) September 18, 2018
One guy decided to give Cruz props for the joke, but not his vote.
OK Ted. Credit where credit is due. That’s pretty funny and pretty chill of you. But I’m still voting for Beto for all the other reasons. 😂😂😂@BetoORourke— Bryan Boyne (@bryanboyne) September 16, 2018
Cruz currently leads O’Rourke by 9 percentage points, according to CNBC.
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