On Thursday, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) took a swipe at Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), saying that Cruz was “defending Nazis” after Cruz referenced a parent who gestured with a Nazi salute at a school board meeting in order to point out that the incidents in the NSBA letter that seemingly precipitated Attorney General Merrick Garland’s memo targeting parents at school board meetings were largely non-violent incidents.
Cruz fired back, “You are frequently a liar (when you’re not sleeping with Chinese spies).”
He added, “But here, you’re (sic) lie is exactly 180 degrees false. I was defending the right of citizens to denounce authoritarian policies. In other words, to OPPOSE Nazis (or petty tyrants), not to support them.”
You are frequently a liar (when you’re not sleeping with Chinese spies).
But here, you’re lie is exactly 180 degrees false. I was defending the right of citizens to denounce authoritarian policies. In other words, to OPPOSE Nazis (or petty tyrants), not to support them. https://t.co/EghsxDaWBo
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) October 27, 2021
The exchange that prompted Swalwell’s attempt at smearing Cruz involved Cruz questioning Garland on Wednesday.
Cruz asked Garland, “Let me ask you something, (Attorney) General Garland: In the letter, which you told the House of Representatives was the basis for this abusive memo targeting parents, how many incidents are cited in that memo?”
“I have to look back through the memo,” Garland answered.
“You don’t know. How many of them were violent?” Cruz asked.
“Again, the general report—” Garland began.
“How many of them were violent?” Cruz persisted.
“I don’t know,” Garland admitted.
Cruz asserted, “You don’t know. And there’s a reason you don’t know. Because you didn’t care and nobody in your office cared to find out. I did a quick count just sitting here during this hearing; I counted 20 incidents cited. Of the 20, 15 on their face are non-violent. They involve things like insults; they involve a Nazi salute. That’s one of the examples. My God, a parent did a Nazi salute at a school board because he thought the policies were oppressive. General Garland, is doing a Nazi salute at an elected official, is that protected by the First Amendment?”
Garland replied, “Yes, it is.”
This is not the first time Cruz has blistered Swalwell for his past actions vis-à-vis China; in December 2020, Cruz issued a tweet targeting Swalwell, who had denounced President Trump as an agent of Russia but then was revealed to have gotten so “close” with a Communist Chinese spy that the FBI felt compelled to intervene. Cruz tweeted, “More than once, I’ve said ‘screw the Chinese communists.’ Little did I know how closely Swalwell was listening.”
More than once, I’ve said “screw the Chinese communists.”
Little did I know how closely Swalwell was listening.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) December 10, 2020
As The Daily Wire reported:
A suspected Chinese spy operating in the Bay Area during the Obama administration reportedly got so close to Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) that the FBI had to intervene and provide him with a defensive briefing. Fang’s ties to Swalwell began when he was a councilmember for Dublin City, California, which is part of China’s long-term strategy of getting in with people before they make it big on the national stage. Fang met Swalwell through a Chinese student organization and by 2014 had quickly “developed close ties to Swalwell’s office” and was a “bundler” for him — meaning that she helped him bring in big donors.
Axios reported, “Amid a widening counterintelligence probe, federal investigators became so alarmed by Fang’s behavior and activities that around 2015 they alerted Swalwell to their concerns — giving him what is known as a defensive briefing. Swalwell immediately cut off all ties to Fang, according to a current U.S. intelligence official, and he has not been accused of any wrongdoing.”