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Tipsheet

Ted Cruz Has a Warning About the 'Election Variant'

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Just in time for the 2024 election, COVID looks to be making a comeback in the news cycle. With First Lady Jill Biden having tested positive for the virus on Monday night, President Joe Biden is following guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), or so we're told. He's often been seen not wearing a mask, and even joking about how he's not. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) in the Wednesday edition of his podcast, "The Verdict," warned about what he referred to as "the most deadly COVID variant ever seen," which will be "the election variant."

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Speaking to how mandates are "crap," Cruz also spoke to that "election variant," explaining how "before the election they're going to need to shut everything down because they want to have mail-in balloting for everyone because they think it helps elect Democrats." 

"Enough is enough is enough," Cruz declared.

These warnings about "the election variant" served as part of a larger conversation that Cruz had with co-host Ben Ferguson about the danger of mandates, which Cruz called "utterly absurd" and "wrong." It also illustrates a few things about the left, though.

The senator described masks as being about "an aticle of faith" and "a virtue signal," as "it shows just how self-righteous they think they are," as well as about "control." Cruz was not merely speaking about hypotheticals, though, as he shared he saw a "very prominent Democrat senator" wearing an N95 mask at the Capitol, with that senator's staffer wearing an N95 mask as well, which Cruz highlighted as an example of "virtue."

Although Cruz did not name that senator, it's worth pointing out that Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) has a sign outside of his office noting that masks are required. As our friends at Twitchy highlighted, Markey blocked Sen. JD Vance's bill to ban federa mask mandates on Thursday, a day after this edition of "The Verdict" aired.

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Mask mandates have returned to movie studioscolleges and universities, and even elementary schools. Students at the Rosemary Hills Elementary School in Montgomery County will make students in "identified classes or activities" wear KN95 masks. The district is in a Maryland suburb close to Washington, D.C.

Whether they apply to mask or vaccine mandates, or have to do with taking yet another booster, these mandates are about "control" and they are "crap," Cruz insisted. "Enough is enough is enough. If you want to wear a damn mask fine, but don't be a hypocrite, and don't try to force other people to," he also went on to say.

Further, it's not merely Cruz and Ferguson making such points, the senator pointed out. As he reminded, even CNN's Michael Smerconish confronted Dr. Anthony Fauci about the conflicting advice he's given on masks last weekend, as he informed the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases' former director about the perception that masks don't work and didn't work, asking him to respond.

Fauci claimed "that's not so" and insisted and doubled down on how "there's no doubt that masks work."

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Responding to Fauci's response, Cruz pointed out how "Fauci himself knows what he's saying is wrong," as the senator also called to mind how Fauci had flip-flopping views on whether he recommended wearing a mask, including in an email to former Health & Human Services Director Sylvia Burwell on February 5, 2020. "And by the way, his whole defense was, well, individually, it makes sense just not for society," Cruz summarized about Fauci's points. 

Here's what Fauci wrote on February 5 of 2020, quote, 'masks are really for infected people to prevent them from spreading infection to people who are not infected, rather than protecting uninfected people from acquiring infection.' Fauci continues: 'The typical mask you buy in the drugstore is not really effective in keeping outvirus, which is small enough to pass through material. It might, however, provide some slight benefit to keep out gross droplets, if someone coughs or sneezes on you.' And he added, quote, 'I do not recommend that you wear a mask, particularly since you are going to a very low-risk location,'" Cruz read, again, reading Fauci's own words.

Cruz also offered why it is that Fauci might have changed what he was telling people, in that "then he decided that it was politically beneficial to mandate that everyone had to wear a mask."

But, as Cruz said he found "significant," even CNN is taking issue with Fauci's narrative. 

The atmosphere looks ripe for resistance should the Biden administration attempt for shutdowns and mask mandates. "I think a lot of the country is going to say no, and hell no. I’ll tell you the state of Texas has zero interest in shutting down," he said about the state he represents, though it's not just Texans. "And I think you're gonna see resistance, not just in Texas, but all over the country."

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Ferguson concurred, pointing out that people are also really worried "that we could go back into some sort of government shutdown." Given the words of now President Joe Biden, this is a real concern, as Ferguson referenced an interview that Biden gave with ABC News' David Muir in 2020. "I would shut it down," Biden said about the economy. 

"I mean, that's apparently still on the table," Ferguson feared, raising concerns about what could follow. "And if they're bringing the mask back, how far away are we fromhaving another fall where they start shutting things down, and what should the American people do?"

"Look, the Democrats want to shut it down. They want to impose mandates," Cruz responded, speaking also to Biden's claims about "listening to the scientists."

"And I gotta say one of the biggest lies of that exchange is I would listen to the scientists, the only scientists that he listens to are the ones who say what he wants to hear," Cruz said, raising a truly thoughtful point.

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