- Cruz spoke before a religious, conservative crowd
- An announcer introduced the next speaker before he was done
Cruz, a conservative Republican, spoke Thursday at the Faith and Freedom Coalition conference in Washington. The group apologized to Cruz later Thursday.
Dr. Ralph Reed, the chairman of the conservative religious group, introduced Cruz, who then spoke before the crowd.
Cruz kicked off his speech making a light-hearted joke comparing Reed to the literary character Dorian Gray and applauding President Donald Trump's victory against Hillary Clinton. The crowd received him warmly throughout as he discussed a gamut of issues, from Justice Neil Gorsuch's successful confirmation to health care and tax reform, before calling those gathered to action.
At about nine minutes in, Cruz began thanking the coalition, but then the announcer came on the speakers to introduce the next person slated to speak. In response to the awkward moment, Cruz threw up his hands and walked off the stage, saying thank you and waving as he exited to upbeat music and applause.
Lance Lemmonds, a spokesperson for the Faith and Freedom Coalition, said the moment was a "mistake by our audio-visual volunteer," and offered a statement to CNN.
The statement read: "Sen. Cruz had not completed his remarks when a member of the audio-visual team mistakenly announced the next speaker. We sincerely apologize to Sen. Cruz, who is a great friend of this organization and people of faith across the country."