Ted Cruz blasts Washington Post cartoon of daughters as monkeys

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Sen. Ted Cruz launched an "emergency" fundraising appeal seeking to raise $1 million in 24 hours in response to a Washington Post online editorial cartoon depicting the Republican's two young daughters as dancing monkeys.

The Republican presidential candidate also criticized the paper for its "tasteless attack" on his children.

"My daughters are not FAIR GAME," he wrote in a fundraising email sent late Tuesday. "I'm sickened ... I knew I'd be facing attacks from day one of my campaign, but I never expected anything like this."


Cruz accused the "liberal media" of attempting to "attack and destroy me (and my family) by any means necessary."

"This is an emergency — all hands on deck," his fundraising letter added. "Click here to make an instant, emergency contribution and help me fight back."

Nine facts you should know about Ted Cruz:

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9 Facts you should know about Ted Cruz
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Ted Cruz blasts Washington Post cartoon of daughters as monkeys

1) His legal name is Rafael Edward Cruz.

(Photo: PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

2) His wife Heidi has worked at investment banking firm Goldman Sachs. The company told CNN Monday she will go on unpaid leave for the duration of his campaign. They met while they worked on George W. Bush's 2000 presidential campaign.​

(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

3) He won his Senate seat in 2010 without ever having been elected to public office before. Prior to that he had been appointed to the office of the Solicitor General in Texas.  ​

(Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

4) He had a minor brush with the law in 1987 when he received a ticket for underage possession of alcohol as a senior in high school. ​

(Photo by: Lloyd Bishop/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

5) He has two Ivy League degrees: an undergraduate degree from Princeton, and a law degree from Harvard.

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

6) He has kept a painting of himself in his office -- a picture of him as a 32-year-old arguing a case before the Supreme Court.

(AP Photo/Harry Cabluck)

7) He played a significant role in the government shutdown of 2013, leading a chorus of Republicans who refused to vote for any plan that kept the federal government running that did not also defund Obamacare. Cruz spend nearly 24 straight hours defending his position, including at one point reading the Dr. Seuss classic "Green Eggs and Ham."

(AP Photo/Senate TV)

8) His father (left) fled Cuba for the United States, worked in the oil industry and eventually became a pastor. He has made headlines for somewhat inflammatory statements, including telling an audience that President Obama should be sent "back to Kenya."

(Ron T. Ennis/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT via Getty Images)

9) He doesn't believe in climate change, an issue many Democrats have lampooned him for, in part because he leads the Senate's Space, Science, and Competitiveness Committee which oversees NASA.​ During a recent appearance on "Late Night with Seth Meyers" Cruz said "Debates on this should follow science and should follow data. Many of the alarmists on global warming, they’ve got a problem because the science doesn’t back them up."

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

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The animation by Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Ann Telnaes sparked immediate controversy and was later taken down by the Post.

The cartoon — which portrayed Cruz in a Santa outfit with an organ-grinder and daughters Catherine, 4, and Caroline, 7, as monkeys — was replaced by a note from editorial page editor Fred Hiatt, explaining that it had generally been the newspaper's policy "to leave children out of it."

Hiatt said: "I failed to look at this cartoon before it was published. I understand why Ann thought an exception to the policy was warranted in this case, but I do not agree."

Telnaes was herself unapologetic, posting a link on Twitter to a parody campaign ad released by Cruz's campaign which showed him reading Christmas stories to his daughters with titles such as "How Obamacare Stole Christmas" and "Rudolph the Underemployed Reindeer." That ad aired during the most recent episode "Saturday Night Live."



Cruz received support from his Republican rival Marco Rubio, who called the cartoon "disgusting."

Cruz is on the final day of an eight-state, 12-city "Christmas Tour." A new national Quinnipiac poll released Tuesday put the Canadian-born Texas senator at 24 percent in the race for the GOP nomination — behind Donald Trump at 28 percent.

Last weekend, Cruz's wife, Heidi, and the couple' daughters joined him for a weekend trip through the South. While their father shook hands, his two daughters stood on stage and waved to the crowd.

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