Sen. Ted Cruz walked back any expression of interest in being on the Supreme Court after being included on President Trump’s shortlist to be nominated to the nation’s highest bench.
Speaking to Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures,” Cruz (R-Tx.) was blunt when asked by host Maria Bartiromo if he would want to the job.
“You know, I don’t. It is deeply honoring, it’s humbling to be included in the list. I’m grateful that the president has that confidence in me. But it’s not the desire of my heart,” the Texas Republican said.
The 2016 GOP presidential primary runner-up fought a bitter battle against then-candidate Trump for the GOP nomination, however the two have since somewhat mended fences.
While the Texas senator has not spoken ill of the president since he took the oath of office, Cruz has not taken back any of his previous sentiments either.
In 2016, Cruz initially declined to endorse Trump after he secured the party’s nomination.
It was Trump’s decision to release a list of prospective Supreme Court nominees that swayed the senator to finally put aside their differences for the sake of party unity.
For Cruz, the judiciary has always been a passion. He clerked for Chief Justice William Rehnquist and is releasing a book on the Supreme Court ahead of Election Day. He has also been open about his interest to run for president again in 2024.
On Sunday, he told Fox News that he could best serve the judiciary from his position in the legislative branch.
“I want to be in the political fight. I want to be fighting to nominate and confirm three, four, five principled, constitutionalist justices. But that’s not where I want to serve. I want to stay fighting right where I am in the US Senate,” the Texas senator said.
When Cruz was initially announced on the list, he offered a much vaguer response, declining to say whether he would accept the nomination.
“I am grateful for the president’s confidence in me and for his leadership in nominating principled constitutionalists to the federal bench over the last four years. As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, I’ve been proud to help confirm to the bench over 200 of President Trump’s judicial nominees, including two to the Supreme Court. It’s humbling and an immense honor to be considered for the Supreme Court.
“The High Court plays a unique role in defending our Constitution, and there is no greater responsibility in public service than to support and defend the Constitution of the United States. In the Senate, I have been blessed to lead the fight to preserve our constitutional liberties — every day, to defend the rights of 29 million Texans — and I look forward to continuing to do so for many years to come,” the former Trump rival said.