On Sunday, after Fox News anchor Chris Wallace mocked Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), likening his defense of President Trump to Japanese soldiers who refused to accept defeat after World War II, Cruz fired back, snapping that Wallace “beclowned himself with a shamefully biased debate performance” and “continues to demonstrate his rank partisanship.”
As Mediaite reported, Wallace stated, “It would seem to me that Republicans on Capitol Hill have a role to play in this, a very few of them have said ‘look, you pursue your legal options but damp down the rhetoric,’ like Mitt Romney, like Pat Toomey. There are a lot who are just silent and there are some, I mentioned Ted Cruz, who are like the Japanese soldiers who come out 30 years after the end of the war and out of the jungle and say, ‘Is the fight still going on?’”
Fox News’ own Mark Levin, disgusted with his colleague’s unprovoked attack on Cruz, issued a blistering tweet, writing, “This is way out of line. Keep your politics to yourself, Mr. Journalist. You’re not just showing ankle, you’ve undressed yourself.”
This is way out of line. Keep your politics to yourself, Mr. Journalist. You’re not just showing ankle, you’ve undressed yourself.https://t.co/W4KOcRrgPe
— Mark R. Levin (@marklevinshow) November 8, 2020
Cruz followed with a tweet of his own: “Chris Wallace, who beclowned himself with a shamefully biased debate performance—universally panned—continues to demonstrate his rank partisanship. Urging that we follow the law & that election recounts be actually completed is not somehow undermining democracy.”
Chris Wallace, who beclowned himself with a shamefully biased debate performance—universally panned—continues to demonstrate his rank partisanship.
Urging that we follow the law & that election recounts be actually completed is not somehow undermining democracy. https://t.co/vLVUpe23OT
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) November 8, 2020
In late January 2016, Cruz asserted at a GOP presidential primary debate, moderated by Wallace, that Wallace should have allowed him to reply to a question Wallace asked Chris Christie that implicitly criticized Cruz. Wallace denied that he had included Cruz in the question, but he was wrong and Cruz was right. The transcript of the relevant portion of the debate went like this:
Wallace: Governor Christie, you have compared both Senators Cruz and Rubio to Barack Obama, saying that we cannot afford another inexperienced President. You’ve also said that Senator Cruz’s vote to curtail the NSA surveillance program made America less safe. Is either of them ready to be Commander in Chief?
Christie: Well, let me say that I do believe that the vote on NSA made the country less safe. Well, let me tell you what the country should really be worried about. I watched that town hall meeting with the Democrats the other night, and I heard Hillary Clinton asked a direct question by an Iowan, and that’s what Iowans like to do. They like to ask direct questions.
And, they asked about her email situation. And, here’s what she said to the American people. She did it for convenience. For her convenience. She put America’s secrets at risk for her convenience. She put American intelligence officers at risk for her convenience. She put American strategy at risk for her convenience.
Let me tell you who’s not qualified to be President of the United States, Chris. Hillary Rodham Clinton did that to our country. She is not qualified to be President of the United States.The fact is what we need is someone on that stage who has been tested, who has been through it, who has made decisions, who has sit (ph) in the chair of consequence and can prosecute the case against Hillary Clinton on that stage, and that is exactly what I am ready to do.
Wallace: Governor (Jeb) Bush…
Cruz: Chris? Chris I was mentioned in that question.
Bush: No, you weren’t. Your name wasn’t mentioned, Ted.
Cruz: … Actually, I was…
Bush, trying to ignore Cruz, “Chris, keep it coming…”
Wallace to Cruz: I don’t think that your name was mentioned…
Cruz: Chris, your questions that you…
Wallace: Sir, I think — I think the question was —
Cruz: What was your question?
Wallace: It’s not my question that you get a chance to respond to, it’s his answer. You don’t get 30 seconds to respond to me…
Cruz: Your question was you have disagreed…
Wallace, repeating: You don’t get 30 seconds to respond to me…
Cruz: (inaudible) opening statement.
Wallace: If I could go on. Sir, I know you like to argue about the rules, but we’re going to conduct a debate…
Bush: Thank you, Chris.
Wallace: Governor Bush?
Cruz: This entire question was an attack.