No, Sen. Ted Cruz didn’t tweet the same message after different mass shootings

Viral tweets claim Sen. Ted Cruz copy and pasted the same message to Twitter after mass shootings. That’s false.

Six people were killed at a small, private Christian school just south of downtown Nashville on Monday, March 27, after a shooter opened fire inside the building of about 200 students, police said. The shooter was killed by police. 

In the wake of the attack, several politicians expressed outrage and offered condolences to the families of the victims. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) tweeted, “Heidi and I are praying for the entire Nashville community right now. May God's comfort be with the Covenant School in the wake of this evil atrocity.”

But some people online claim this is not usually what Cruz writes in the wake of a shooting. One tweet with more than one million views claims Cruz uses the same text – copied and pasted – after mass shootings in the U.S.  

The viral image shows 12 tweets purportedly from Cruz. Each tweet starts with “Heidi & I are fervently lifting up in prayer the children and families in the horrific shooting” in [INSERT CITY HERE].” 

The same text is used, but the city’s name is changed. The date and timestamp were also different in each screenshot purporting to be of Cruz’s tweets.

THE QUESTION

Has Ted Cruz tweeted the same words after different mass shootings?

THE SOURCES

THE ANSWER

   

This is false.

No, Sen. Ted Cruz hasn't tweeted the same words after different mass shootings. 

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WHAT WE FOUND

The viral image claims to show 12 of Cruz’s tweets from Dec. 14, 2012 through May 25, 2022.

The tweet in the top left corner is from May 25, 2022, which was posted in response to the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. That tweet is real.

Cruz did write, “Heidi & I are fervently lifting up in prayer the children and families in the horrific shooting in Uvalde. We are in close contact with local officials, but the precise details are still unfolding. Thank you to heroic law enforcement & first responders for acting so swiftly.”

But, VERIFY found the rest of the tweets in the viral image aren’t real. VERIFY went through an archive of Cruz’s tweets using Twitter Advanced Search, internet archive tool The Wayback Machine and Politwoops, an internet tool by ProPublica that tracks politicians’ deleted tweets.  

Cruz spokesman Steve Guest also confirmed to VERIFY the Uvalde tweet was accurate and “all the rest are fake.”

Credit: Screenshot/Twitter

VERIFY found that Cruz didn’t tweet anything about the attacks in New York City, Sacramento, California; Indianapolis, Indiana; Rochester, New York; Virginia Beach, Virginia; or Parkland, Florida, like the viral image suggested.

He did tweet about mass shootings in El Paso, Texas; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Las Vegas, Nevada;  Orlando, Florida; and Newtown, Connecticut. The text of those actual tweets from Cruz are different than what was pictured in the viral image.

Here is a full timeline of what Cruz actually posted, based on the 12 dates and locations outlined in the fake viral image:

  • April 12, 2022 (New York City subway shooting): VERIFY did not find a tweet from Cruz in response to this attack.

  • April 3, 2022 (downtown Sacramento shooting): VERIFY did not find a tweet from Cruz in response to this attack.

  • April 17, 2021 (Indianapolis FedEx shooting): VERIFY did not find a tweet from Cruz in response to this attack.

  • Sept. 20, 2020 (Rochester backyard party shooting): VERIFY did not find a tweet from Cruz in response to this attack.

  • Aug. 4, 2019 (El Paso Walmart shooting): Cruz tweeted several times about the El Paso shooting. None of them used the same text in the viral image – see here, here and here.

  • May 31, 2019: (Virginia Beach municipal building shooting): VERIFY did not find a tweet from Cruz in response to this attack.

  • Oct. 28, 2018 (Pittsburgh synagogue shooting): Cruz tweeted once about this shooting on Oct. 27, 2018. The tweet did not have the same text seen in the viral image.

  • Feb. 14, 2018 (Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland): VERIFY did not find a tweet from Cruz in response to this attack.

  • Oct. 2, 2017 (Las Vegas shooting):  Cruz tweeted once about this shooting. The tweet didn’t have the same text seen in the viral image.

  • June 13, 2016 (Orlando nightclub shooting): Cruz tweeted once about this shooting. The tweet didn’t have the same text seen in the viral image.

  • Dec. 14, 2012 (Sandy Hook Elementary School): Cruz tweeted once about this shooting. The tweet didn’t have the same text seen in the viral image.

So, we can VERIFY that no, Sen. Ted Cruz hasn't tweeted the same words after different mass shootings.

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