Ted Cruz: 'Staffing Issue,' 'Mistake' Led to Porn Tweet Liked by Account

"We're dealing with it internally... it was not malicious conduct," Texas senator says after Twitter account "liked" pornographic video

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Ted Cruz: 'Staffing Issue,' 'Mistake' Led to Porn Tweet Liked by Account

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz caused a buzz online early Tuesday morning after eagle-eyed Twitter users noticed that his official Twitter account had "liked" a pornographic video posted by an account with handle @SexuallPosts late Monday night.

Per Washington Post reporter Ed O'Keefe, Cruz addressed the scandal to reporters Tuesday morning, saying that "a 'staffing issue' led to" the account's "liking" the tweet in question. "Cruz told reporters: 'There are a number of people on the team who have access to the account. It appears that someone inadvertently hit the 'like' button and when we discovered the post... we pulled it down,'" O'Keefe tweeted, quoting Cruz. "'We're dealing with it internally but it was a mistake, it was not malicious conduct.'"

Continued O'Keefe: "Cruz wouldn't name the staffer; nor what discipline they might face; it is 'still being discussed' whether person will access the account. Cruz quips: If he'd known it would trend so quickly, 'perhaps we should have posted something like this during the Indiana primary.'"

Cruz's senior communications adviser, Catherine Frazier, issued a statement Tuesday that the head-scratching action had been undone and reported to the social media site. "The offensive tweet posted on @tedcruz account earlier has been removed by staff and reported to Twitter," she wrote on her own account. Frazier did not offer a further explanation as to how the initial "like" came to be, or whether the politician's account had been hacked.

Late-night host Jimmy Kimmel couldn't help ribbing Cruz alongside a number of celebrities and political commentators, tweeting, "Well done @TEdCruz using the power of 'like' to illustrate the evils of porn #Weiner," along with a screenshot of the damning like.

Last year, it was revealed that Cruz had previously defended a Texas state law banning the sale of sex toys, arguing in a 2007 court brief that individuals did not have the right to use them, even in the privacy of their own bedrooms.

In April 2016, however, the senator and former Republican presidential hopeful recanted his previous stance during his bid for the presidency, telling New York's WABC radio when asked whether he would ban the sale of sex toys if he became president: "Look, of course not, it's a ridiculous question, and of course not. What people do in their own private time with themselves is their own business and it's none of government's business."