The Slatest

Ted Cruz: “Of Course” It’s Inappropriate for Trump to Ask China to Probe Bidens

President Donald Trump greets Sen. Ted Cruz during a campaign rally at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas, October 22, 2018.
President Donald Trump greets Sen. Ted Cruz during a campaign rally at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas, October 22, 2018.
SAUL LOEB/Getty Images

Sen. Ted Cruz became the latest in a handful of Republican senators to criticize President Donald Trump for his public call that China investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son. “Of course not,” Cruz told Margaret Brennan during an interview on CBS’ Face the Nation, when he was asked whether it were appropriate for Trump to ask Beijing to investigate the Biden family. “Elections in the U.S. should be decided by Americans and it’s not the business of foreign countries, any foreign countries, to be interfering in our elections,” Cruz added.

Brennan went on to ask about Ukraine: “Do you think that the president’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani who’s been talking about China, who’s been talking about Ukraine, do you want to hear him testify about this sort of shadow foreign policy?” Cruz again reiterated that “foreign countries should stay out of American elections” and it didn’t matter which country. “That’s true for Russia, that’s true for Ukraine, that’s true for China, that’s true for all of them,” Cruz said. “It should be the American people deciding elections. I don’t know what Rudy’s been saying. I do know though that we should decide our elections. It should be the American people making those decisions.”

Cruz went on to say that “it’d make a lot of sense” for Giuliani to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Even though Sen. Lindsey Graham, the chairman of the committee, is the one who has to decide on that, “I’d like to see Rudy testify, yes,” Cruz said.

Lots of Republican lawmakers have been struggling on how to respond to questions from journalists about whether Trump’s public call for China and Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son. Sens. Ben Sasse, Mitt Romney and Susan Collins were the first Republican senators to speak out against Trump’s call for a foreign government to investigate a political rival. Sen. Rob Portman also criticized the way Trump mentioned Biden in his call with the Ukrainian leader. “The President should not have raised the Biden issue on that call, period,” Portman said, according to the Columbus Dispatch. “It’s not appropriate for a President to engage a foreign government in an investigation of a political opponent.” Portman emphasized though that he doesn’t “view it as an impeachable offense.”