Mexican government officials have fired back at Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), after he accused the country of “undermining the rule of law.”
“If he praised me, I might start thinking we weren’t doing things right,” Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Friday. “But if he says we are wrong, well that for me is something to be proud of.”
He said Cruz’s criticism was “expected” given their political differences, the Dallas Morning News reported.
The exchange followed the senator’s criticism of the country over recent killings of journalists and politicians there, with Cruz describing “deepening civil unrest in Mexico and the breakdown there of civil society, the breakdown of the rule of law.”
Mexico’s ambassador to the U.S., Esteban Moctezuma Barragán, also responded to Cruz, publishing an open letter to him on Thursday.
In his letter, Barragán said that at least Mexico’s political candidates accept defeat when they lose elections.
“I invite you to look at what happened in our federal elections last June. All parties, with no exception, accepted the results and kept moving forward to strengthen our democracy and freedom of expression,” Barragán wrote.
He said Mexico’s government also condemns the violence and is taking steps to address it. He encouraged Cruz to join U.S. authorities who were supporting joint efforts to combat the issue, including by reducing the flow of weapons into Mexico.
Cruz led a group of 11 Republican senators who embraced Donald Trump’s false voter fraud claims and tried to halt the certification of the 2020 presidential election results on Jan. 6, 2021, the day Trump supporters laid siege to the U.S. Capitol in their own effort to overturn the result.
Despite the deadly assault ― and an abundance of evidence confirming President Joe Biden’s victory was secure and legitimate ― Cruz has continued to cast doubt on the integrity of the vote. Recently, he promoted a baseless conspiracy theory suggesting the FBI incited the Jan. 6 attack.