Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) literally and figuratively jumped on the bandwagon Thursday morning following a visit to the "People's Convoy," an American version of the recent Canadian trucker protests that's circling around the Washington, D.C. area, The Washington Post reports.
Cruz snagged shotgun in the lead truck heading into the capital from Hagerstown Speedway, while the rest of the convoy plans to continue its circling of the Capital Beltway in protest of COVID-19 restrictions. The lead truck is heading into Washington for a news conference, the Post writes.
"The convoy is not [going into D.C.]," said Brian Brase, the convoy's organizer, while sitting in the lead truck. "The convoy's going to continue its normal operation. This truck will be going into D.C."
And Cruz will be riding along. "There ain't no ignoring a senator riding in the lead truck," Brase told the crowd earlier, calling Cruz's presence "basically an endorsement of what we're doing."
"Your voice is being heard," Cruz addressed the protesters on Thursday. "What the men and women want here is for the government to leave you the hell alone. ... That is the most American sentiment you could imagine," he said, per the Post.
The convoy of "big rigs, RVs and pickups" began circling the Beltway on Sunday, and repeated the demonstration both Monday and Tuesday. They paused Wednesday because of rain and worrisome road conditions.
At the moment, it's not entirely clear when the convoy might clear out, the Post reports; Brase has said the convoy will continue its crusade until mandates for health workers, federal employees, and military personnel are eliminated (though many pandemic restrictions at both the federal and local level have been rescinded, the Post notes).
As of Thursday, there have been no arrests or towed vehicles as a result of the protest, officials said.