Want to get a word in with Texas Sen. Ted Cruz? Good luck.
Cruz was the first to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Thursday in National Harbor, Md. After his speech, TheBlaze Blog spotted him outside the stage room engulfed by fans and reporters trying to snap photos or get a quick quote.
We did our best to get in there and it went like this:
TheBlaze Blog: "Senator! Hey, Senator! Senator!"
This happened as we watched Cruz chatting with some devoted followers, taking a selfie with them here and there.
Again: "Senator! Senator! Hey, Senator!"
Cruz's handlers, a rough crew by necessity (both male and female), then began pushing everyone aside to move Cruz along. They said he was on his way to do a "media available," meaning he would talk with reporters.
We gave it another shot as we walked along his side: "Senator! Senator!"
Fortunately, this time, we got his attention.
For fun, we asked what he thought of Al Jazeera America's rating woes (the fledging news operation is getting less than half the viewership of Current TV, which AJA bought in 2013).
"We're on our way to do a media available," Cruz said.
So, we continued following Cruz to a separate area of the Gaylord hotel, where CPAC is being held. Suddenly, media was blocked.
Some security guys prevented nearly all of us media people from entering the room Cruz was headed to.
Several press people protested, saying Cruz had said he was going to answer questions. No luck. We weren't getting in. The security guys barked at us to move aside.
About 10 minutes later, Cruz resurfaced from the room and apologized to everyone for the mistaken announcement that we were doing a media available. So he took a few questions about Russia, declining to say whether he supported military action against the country for its aggression toward Ukraine.
And with that, he was off.