Ted Cruz Says Merrick Garland Has ‘Contempt For The American People’

Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

James Lynch Reporter
Font Size:

Republican Texas Sen. Ted Cruz criticized Attorney General Merrick Garland for prosecuting pro-life activist Mark Houck and denying any role in the FBI raid of Houck’s home.

Cruz was speaking about Garland and the FBI 21 minutes into a Monday episode of his podcast, “Verdict with Ted Cruz.” He questioned Garland about why Houck was prosecuted in a Senate Judiciary Committee oversight hearing on Mar. 1. He addressed his fiery exchange he had with Garland during the hearing later in the podcast.

Sen. Cruz believes the FBI raided Houck to “send a statement” about its opposition to pro-life activists. “The FBI did this because they want to send a message: ‘Pro-life activists, we don’t like you.’ And he [Garland] claimed he didn’t personally authorize it … I don’t know if he knew about it or not … I ran out of time so I didn’t get to ask him if he if he knew about it or not. He certainly doesn’t apologize for it now,” he said. (RELATED: ‘Spoils System’: Ted Cruz Slams Inexperienced Biden FAA Nominee As Patronage Pick)

“Look, I would love to know who at the Department of Justice signed off on this use of force, who signed off on this prosecution, how far up the chain it went. And if we had a Department of Justice that actually was accountable to the people, we would know the answer to those questions. You know, the questioning from Garland’s look — he’s offended that Senators dare ask him questions. He doesn’t want to answer anything,” Cruz continued.

“It’s not just that he looks at Senators on the Judiciary Committee, which by the way is charged with oversight, it is literally our responsibility to engage in oversight over the Department of Justice. And we do that for both Republican and Democrat administrations. But his contempt is really contempt for the American people.”

Houck was prosecuted for allegedly violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act after he was accused of assaulting an abortion clinic volunteer in September 2022. He says the volunteer was verbally harassing his 12-year-old son, so he pushed him away in self-defense.

Houck was arrested in October when over a dozen FBI agents raided his home and pointed guns at him and his wife. A Pennsylvania grand jury indicted Houck on two charges of violating the FACE Act, to which he pleaded not guilty. He was acquitted of both charges following a jury deadlock.