The Texas senator who recently told the president he doesn’t believe he should receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom said Tuesday he has not decided whether to recommend the president receive the award.
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said he has asked his staff for recommendations but did not say whether he has made up his mind.
He said he hopes the president will receive the medal.
“If he does, then I will be there with him and we will have a conversation and then we will determine what is appropriate,” Cruz said.
The president recently received the Medal of Honor.
Cruz, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told reporters last week he was “totally” confident the president would receive the Medal.
The White House said it had not received the medal, which is given to a recipient for exceptional achievement or courage in combat.
But Trump, in a series of tweets on Tuesday, repeatedly denied the claim and said he would consider it if the Medal were given to him.
“I will be honored to receive the Military Medal of honor for my service to our country, the Constitution, and the Constitution itself,” Trump said.
“It would be a nice gesture, but not for me.”
Cruz told reporters the president has “been absolutely spectacular,” and said the president is “a brilliant man.”
He also said Trump “hasn’t made up” his mind about the medal yet.
The Texas lawmaker said he was not in a position to say whether the Medal should be awarded, but he said he wanted to see what Trump thinks.
“You can never say never, but I would hope that if he received this medal that he would give it to him, because I think he deserves it,” Cruz told The Hill.
Cruz also said he does not know if the president should receive a Medal of Courage.
“What I do know is that if the President is going to receive a medal, he’s got to have a medal,” Cruz added.
Cruz’s comments came after Trump told Fox News host Sean Hannity that he didn’t think Cruz should receive an award because of his opposition to Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement.
“We’ll see if he gets the medal,” Trump told Hannity.
“And then we’ll see.
If he does get it, I’ll tell you what, he deserves a medal.”