The tweets were allegedly written by someone whose cousin was shot during the Robb Elementary School massacre. The tweets claimed that an Abbott representative knocked on their door shortly after they returned home after identifying their cousin’s body, and that this representative “told us he is willing to pay us to support the government.” and to say we don’t need tougher gun laws.”
The tweets claimed the governor’s representative then threatened them with “charges and possibly worse” if they spoke of the conversation — and that the representative even said “people get hurt and disappear all the time.”
In total, the three tweets were retweeted or quoted more than 67,000 times and liked more than 240,000 times. Many of these shares came from liberals who opposed Abbott and Cruz. While some questioned whether the story was real or not, others considered it authentic.
Abbott spokesperson Renae Eze said in an email, “This has not happened and should never happen.” She said Abbott would never allow a staffer to show up at the door of a grieving family unannounced in the first place.
The man behind the account said in a distraught tone on Friday that he and a lawyer were trying to find out who the real poster of the tweets was. He also claimed that they reported the alleged breach of the account to “authorities” whom he did not identify.
False claim about Cruz .’s tweets
Another Twitter user accused Cruz of tweeting the exact same three sentences after 12 different mass shootings, only changing the location each time.
This tweet, from a user on Twitter called “chavito” and rapping the stage name Cali Kev, generated more than 17,000 retweets and quote tweets, plus more than 43,000 likes.
The viral tweet featured a collage of 12 images in which Cruz supposedly tweeted the same words over and over: “Heidi and I fervently lift the children and families in the horrific shooting in [location]† We are in close contact with local officials, but the precise details are still unfolding. Thanks to heroic law enforcement officers and first responders for their swift response.”
The man behind the ‘chavito’ account did not respond to a request for comment. Cruz’s office confirmed that the senator tweeted this message in response to the Uvalde massacre, but not in response to others.
Some other Twitter users criticized Cruz for using similar language, on prayer and law enforcement, in his tweets about some past shootings. That’s fair game. But the claim in the viral tweet was that he used the same three full sentences after 12 shootings, and that’s just not true.