CNN is charging that GOP presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) “knowingly misstated CNN’s reporting during Saturday’s Republican primary debate.”
“What Senator Cruz said tonight in the debate is categorically false. CNN never corrected its reporting because CNN never had anything to correct,” CNN responded in a statement on Saturday night, referencing Cruz’s answer to the controversy with Dr. Ben Carson and the Iowa caucus. “The Cruz campaign’s actions the night of the Iowa caucuses had nothing to do with CNN’s reporting. The fact that Senator Cruz continues to knowingly mislead the voters about this is astonishing.”
During the debate, Cruz said CNN reported that Carson was taking a break from campaigning–suggesting he was going to suspend his campaign–from 6:30 PM to 9:15 PM during the Iowa caucus on Monday.
Cruz blamed CNN’s reporting for his team spreading the message at caucus sites that Carson was suspending campaigning and to urge Carson goers to caucus for Cruz instead.
“My political team saw CNN’s report breaking news and they forwarded that news to our volunteers, it was being covered on live television,” he claimed during the debate when asked about the controversy.
Cruz also claimed CNN had inaccurately reported that Carson was suspending his campaign “from 6:30 p.m. to 9:15,” and “didn’t correct that story until 9:15 that night.”
That is false. CNN never reported that Carson was suspending his campaign and never issued a correction, because there was no need to do so.
Cruz’s campaign sent out a note and called precinct captains telling them to urge caucus goers to support Cruz instead of Carson because Carson was suspending campaigning.
Cruz’s message read:
“Breaking News. The press is reporting that Dr. Ben Carson is taking time off from the campaign trail after Iowa and making a big announcement next week.”
“Please inform any Carson caucus goers of this news and urge them to caucus for Ted Cruz.”
“Essentially the Cruz campaign ignored the inconvenient part of CNN’s original report — that Carson was not dropping out of the race,” CNN charges.