Former U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke (D-Texas) quickly fired back with a litany of critical remarks in response to Sen. Ted Cruz's (R-Texas) footage and remarks about his visit to the Southern border.
On Friday, March 26, the two exchanged words via Twitter when Cruz posted a series of clips with details about his trip with 18 other lawmakers as they explored "the shore of the Rio Grande" to "see the crisis that is playing out." At one point, the Texas lawmaker even claimed so-called "smugglers" were "'yelling' at and taunting him," according to The Hill.
In another clip of Cruz's escapades, he claimed they "encountered human traffickers" and "cartel members" who shined flashlights at them. "That's Mexico, and you can see there are three smugglers right there, standing on the Mexico side, looking at us," Cruz said in the video. "They've been shining their flashlights at us, they're yelling at us."
O'Rourke fired back at Cruz's videos refuting his claims tweeting, "You're in a Border Patrol boat armed with machine guns. The only threat you face is unarmed children and families who are seeking asylum (as well as the occasional heckler)."
O'Rourke added, "If you're looking for a crisis to cosplay Senator for, I'm happy to point you in the right direction."
In a later tweet, the former lawmaker went on to offer Cruz immigration statistics from 2019 up to this point tweeting. "The truth is, the number of individual asylum seekers and immigrants seeking to come to this country is the SAME or LOWER than it was in 2019 when Trump was President (and you were, apparently, Senator)," O'Rourke tweeted.
He added, "This isn't any more of a crisis today than it was then."
Twitter users also fired back with tweets questioning Cruz's account. Many noted that they believed the tweets seemed a bit fabricated while others did not believe any of his accounts. One Twitter user wrote, "10/10 those weren't traffickers OR cartel members. They were probably kids having a party or the Mexican version of Border Control. No smuggler of any kind is gonna be that loud in the middle of the night while they're trying to do shady sh*t."
Another person tweeted, "And how exactly do you know that they were cartel members and human traffickers? This reminds me of Geraldo Rivera's fake combat video from Iraq."
As of Thursday, March 25, the United States had more than 15,000 unaccompanied immigrant minors in its custody.