‘No class’: Ted Cruz sparks outrage against MSNBC for placing ‘Texas Two-Step’ chryon over statue of Governor Greg Abbott in a wheelchair
- Chyron appeared in a teaser in Tuesday’s episode of Andrea Mitchell Reports
- A picture of Governor Greg Abbott, a Republican, read ‘Texas Two Step’
- Abbott has been using a wheelchair since an accident in 1984 left him paralyzed
- Senator Ted Cruz led critics to accuse MSNBC of ‘no class’
MSNBC is facing criticism over an on-screen image that reads “Texas Two Step” that appeared above an image of Texas Governor Greg Abbott using a wheelchair.
Known in the industry as a chyron or lower third, the image appeared in Tuesday’s episode of Andrea Mitchell Reports during a teaser for a segment about Texas Republicans’ push for tougher election laws.
The combination of the name of the “two-step” country western dance with an image of Abbott in his wheelchair sparked immediate outrage and accusations that MSNBC was making fun of the Republican governor’s disability.
“No lesson,” Senator Ted Cruz, a Republican from Texas, tweeted.
An MSNBC spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the incident from DailyMail.com on Wednesday.
Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz led criticism of MSNBC after the network linked a “Texas Two Step” graphic lecture to Governor Greg Abbott in a wheelchair
“And the winner for the most insensitive and deeply stupid chyron of the year goes to…” joked Joe Concha, a media columnist for The Hill.
“It’s okay because it’s Republican,” Twitter user Ryan Petty said.
‘WHAT THE HELL is this MSNBC???’ noted another Twitter user. “Ridiculing @GregAbbott_TX for not being able to walk?”
“I’ll be the first to criticize my governor for the way he runs my state…it’s my duty and my right to do that…but this inference is wrong on so many levels,” commented another on.
In 1984, Abbott was jogging when a storm-damaged oak fell on him, breaking his spine and paralyzing him from the waist down.
He was 26 at the time and recently graduated from law school and has been in a wheelchair ever since.
“Through this experience, Governor Abbott learned that our lives are not defined by our challenges,” his campaign site says of his accident.
Others responded to Cruz criticizing his infamous vacation in Cancun
“Instead, we define our lives by how we respond to those challenges. His victory over tragedy shows that Governor Greg Abbott does not shy away from challenges, but uses his lessons in perseverance to overcome them,” the statement said.
In 2014, MSNBC host Mitchell apologized after referring to Abbott’s “alleged disability.”
The gaffe came when she interviewed Abbott’s campaign opponent Wendy Davis, whose ad showed a photo of an empty wheelchair.
“I have in no way questioned Abbott’s handicap,” Mitchell said Talking Points Memo at that moment. “I was completely wrong.”
Tuesday’s MSNBC segment that sparked controversy focused on arguing over a bill for strict election security measures in Texas, which Democrats claim will disenfranchise voters.
Abbott, seen at the 2016 World Golf Championship, has used a wheelchair since he was hit by a falling oak tree while jogging in 1984
Democrats staged a dramatic Capitol strike just before the end of the regular legislative session Sunday night in an effort to derail the bill by breaking the quorum.
Abbott has said he will order a special session to ultimately secure its approval, and is taunting Democrats with a vow to veto the portion of the budget that funds legislators’ salaries.
The governor too tweeted a reminder of the last time Texan Democrats dramatically blocked a bill: when then-State senator Wendy Davis spoke for more than 11 hours straight in 2013 to filibuster a sweeping anti-abortion measure, which immediately revived Republicans and approved in a special session .
“We all know how that story ended,” Abbott tweeted.
Republicans have a leading majority in both houses of the Texas legislature, and Abbott is expected to convene a special session soon to move forward with the election law.