Sen. Ted Cruz said Tuesday that the so-called progressive "squad" has a concerning history, calling out the "radical and extreme" positions taken by freshmen Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., and Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich.
The Texas Republican said on "Fox & Friends" that the group's rhetoric is "overheated," but emphasized that they're endorsing "full-blown socialism" and some have used "anti-Semitic" language.
President Trump forcefully doubled down Monday on his explosive call for the progressive congresswomen to "go back" to where they came from and "come back and show us how it's done," rather than criticize his administration. He also demanded they "apologize" for what he called their apparent anti-American "hate."
"These freshmen, unfortunately, also have a long and troubling history with anti-Semitism, engaging over and over again, not just once, but multiple times in making anti-Semitic insults, sending anti-Semitic tweets," Cruz said, calling out the failure of the House to pass a resolution condemning anti-Semitism, contrasting it with the unanimous support it received in the Senate.
“You want to know what the House should do in the wake of all this nonsense the last couple of days, they ought to take up and pass the resolution the Senate just passed 100 to nothing.”
When asked why the House was unable to get enough votes to pass the resolution in the first place, Cruz explained that it boiled down to fear.
“The conference is terrified of those freshmen. They are terrified of the radical activists behind those freshmen. So basically, committee chairs, the Speaker has handed her gavel over to the freshmen and every one of them are terrified these freshmen will criticize them," he said.
The four Democrats held a news conference Monday afternoon where they called for the president to be impeached. Omar rejected Trump's rhetoric and outlined a list of grievances she said were disqualifying.
"This is a president who has said 'grab women by the pu--y,'" Omar said, as her colleagues stood behind her stone-faced.
"This is a president who has called black athletes 'sons of bit--es.' This is a president who has called people who come from black and brown countries 'sh--holes.' ... To distract from that, he's launching a blatantly racist attack on four duly elected members of the United States House of Representatives, all of whom are women of color. This is the agenda of white nationalists."