'What the F***?': Furious Ted Cruz Ranted at Fox News Bias for Donald Trump During Nomination Battle, Book Claims

A new book detailing the internal Republican Party conflict during the rise of President Donald Trump has shed light on Senator Ted Cruz's waning influence with Fox News during his failed run at the GOP presidential nomination in 2016.

American Carnage: On the Front Lines of the Republican Civil War and the Rise of President Trump by Politico chief political correspondent Tim Alberta will be published on July 16. The book illustrates Fox News' transition to a symbiotic relationship with Trump, much to the frustration of the GOP establishment.

Cruz was one of the many spurned Republican grandees. Once close with late Fox News chief Roger Ailes, the Texas senator struggled as he gradually lost sway with the right-wing media and was lost in the furor surrounding Trump's insurgent campaign, The Guardian—which obtained a pre-publication copy of the book—reported.

Cruz's frustration with Trump's dominance of the news cycle reportedly came to a head on the night of the Wisconsin primary on April 5, 2016, in which Cruz trounced Trump 48 percent to 34.

The resounding victory meant Cruz still had a chance of winning the GOP nomination, even though he had been struggling to best Trump who by that point had emerged as the national front runner.

Watching the post-vote coverage on his campaign bus, Cruz was initially pleased to see his photograph on screen as the result was being dissected, Alberta wrote.

But his attitude quickly changed when Fox News host Sean Hannity—one of the most extreme right-wing pundits who has gone on to become an influential Trump ally—jumped in to discuss Trump's strong polling figures ahead of the upcoming New York, north-east, Indiana and West Virginia primaries.

Alberta said this pushed Cruz over the edge, and the senator leaped up from his seat shouting, "What the f**k?" The Politico correspondent said Cruz's staff had never seen the senator so angry.

Fox News' alignment with Trump was all the more frustrating for Cruz given his relationship with Ailes. The two would regularly meet for breakfast in New York, but as the race for the GPO crystalized, Ailes gradually cut contact with Cruz in favor of Trump.

After Ailes died—in disgrace having been pushed out of Fox under the cloud of numerous sexual harassment allegations—in May 2017, Cruz reportedly told friends: "I think it was Roger's dying wish to elect Donald Trump president."

While Fox News' backing would be vital for any prospective Republican candidate, Cruz said the Trump effect grabbed hold of the mainstream media more generally.

"I didn't anticipate that Trump would receive over three billion dollars in free media," the senator said, according to Alberta. "There is no precedent for that in the history of the United States of America."

Though Cruz agreed to speak at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, where Trump officially received the nomination, he still refused to endorse the next president. During the primary race, Trump had dubbed Cruz "Lyin' Ted" and issued personal attacks on his father and his wife.

The senator told friends there was "no way in hell" he would go in front of millions to endorse such a man, Alberta said, adding, "History isn't kind to the man who holds Mussolini's jacket."

Cruz has apparently set aside such concerns in the years since, enthusiastically accepting Trump's endorsement in his 2018 senate re-election campaign and publicly praising the president's divisive administration.

Cruz's submission to the president has prompted scorn and mockery from opponents and observers, who cite the u-turn as evidence of the GOP's capitulation to Trumpism.

Ted Cruz, Fox News, bias, Donald Trump
Senator Ted Cruz is pictured during a hearing in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill on May 14, 2019 in Washington, D.C. Chip Somodevilla/Getty
'What the F***?': Furious Ted Cruz Ranted at Fox News Bias for Donald Trump During Nomination Battle, Book Claims | Politics