Former presidential candidate, U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, responded Thursday morning after he was booed while on stage Wednesday night at the Republican National Convention. During the speech, Cruz did not endorse Republican Nominee Donald Trump.
Cruz told a gathering of the Texas delegates, “I addressed the convention because Donald Trump asked me to.”
“And when Donald asked me to, he didn’t ask me to endorse, and indeed, three days ago I talked on the phone with him and told him I’m not going to endorse you.”
Someone shouted from the crowd, “Why not?”
Cruz responded, “Sir, I’m happy to answer that, but not engage in a screaming fight.”
Cruz went on to say he had previously promised to support the Republican nominee even if it wasn’t him. Then he explained why he’s no longer willing to do that.
“I’ll tell you the day that pledge was abrogated, was the day this became personal,” Cruz said. “I’m not going to get into criticizing or attacking Donald Trump, but I’ll give you this response. I am not in the habit of supporting people who attack my wife and attack my father.”
Someone in the crowd asked if Cruz would vote for Trump.
“I can tell you, I’m not voting for Hillary,” Cruz said.
Cruz was hammered by Republicans for this speech to the RNC including former presidential candidate, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.
“I think it was awful. And quite frankly, I think it was something selfish,” Christie said.
Trump responded after the speech on Twitter.
He wrote, “Wow, Ted Cruz got booed off the stage, didn’t honor the pledge! I saw his speech two hours early but let him speak anyway. No big deal!”
Trump lawyer Michael Cohen said on CNN that “the only way to describe it is political suicide.”
Cruz’s chief strategist Jason Johnson tweeted, “Since it’s obvious the shock is contrived, let me ask: What the Hell did they expect from the son of the man who killed JFK? Light’n up.”