Sen. Ted Cruz expressed public relief that US citizen Trevor Reed was released from Russian prison.
Reed’s father was not “appreciative” of Cruz’s lack of action in helping to free his son.
A family spokesperson told Insider Cruz could’ve used his influence to speak to former President Trump.
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz “didn’t do anything” to aide in former Marine Trevor Reed’s release from Russian custody, according to Reed’s father, Joey Reed.
Trevor Reed was detained in Moscow in 2019 after being convicted of attacking Russian police. He reportedly suffered during his stay in a Russian prison, including getting a broken rib and catching COVID-19.
He was released on April 27 as part of a prisoner exchange between Russia and the US. Reed was swapped for Konstantin Yaroshenko, a Russian pilot sentenced for drug smuggling.
“He didn’t do anything,” Joey Reed said of Cruz in an interview with The Dallas Morning News. “He’s an embarrassment to the state of Texas, let me just say that. I don’t care what or who runs against him, I will work for their campaign to defeat that son of a bitch.”
Joey Reed was so dissatisfied with Cruz’ actions surrounding his son that when Cruz called to congratulate them after publicly showing support for his son’s release, the elder Reed said he asked “where have you been for the last two and a half years?”
“I hit him point-blank: ‘We are not appreciative,'” Reed told the News.
“They don’t need celebratory tweets or phone calls,” Jonathan Franks, a spokesperson for the Reeds told Insider. “When their loved one has been released, they need tweets and phone calls when their loved ones are in jail.”
Reed called Cruz asking for help years prior, but Cruz’s staff said he couldn’t speak out about their son’s detainment publicly because the senator was an “enemy of Putin,” Reed said.
Franks told Insider the call between the Reeds and Cruz’s staff member was “unfortunate” and that the senator had not called to check in again until Trevor’s release.
Franks also emphasized that it was not a partisan attack — rather, the family wanted to emphasize that Cruz’s outsized influence in the world of politics could have been beneficial to the family’s fight.
“Particularly when Trump was president, it would’ve helped a lot if Ted Cruz had picked up the phone and called the President and said ‘bring this kid home.”‘ Franks told Insider. “We were almost there. Like he could have picked up the phone called Trump and told him to make a deal. “
Franks told Insider that he could not confirm if Cruz had made such an action privately without the family’s knowledge.
Cruz said he did not speak out partly because administration officials told him it could be “counterproductive” because he had been so against Russia’s proposed Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, he told the News in a statement.
Joey Reed told the News that Texas GOP Rep. Michael McCaul also publicly went against the Nord Stream and had still been a vocal advocate for Trevor’s release.
Representatives for Cruz did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
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