Sen. Ted Cruz showed his support Friday for a Dallas hair salon owner after she was jailed for opening in violation of the state’s coronavirus rule — by dropping by for a haircut that led her to shed tears of relief.
“We’re thrilled to be with you and know the whole state of Texas is standing with you, so thank you for your courage,” Cruz told Shelley Luther, who was released Thursday at the order of the state Supreme Court, CBS 11 News reported.
The Republican senator told Luther he hadn’t had a haircut in about three months — and that his wife, Heidi, even warned he would “start bringing mullets back” if he didn’t take action soon.
At one point during his visit to the Salon à la Mode, Luther began crying and thanked Cruz for his support.
“When people reach out with true authenticity, it’s huge,” she said.
“It’s a nice gesture. His family actually called my boyfriend and prayed for him for 20 minutes while I was in jail,” Luther told the news outlet.
“To me, that’s not political … that’s just really nice people reaching out and making sure that our family is OK,” she said.
Luther was jailed Tuesday by Dallas County State District Judge Eric Moyé, but was sprung through Gov. Greg Abbott’s executive order retroactively eliminating jail time for violating the state’s coronavirus restrictions.
The judge sentenced Luther to seven days in the slammer with a fine of $1,000 per day — $500 per day for a contempt charge and $500 per day for each day her business was open.
On Wednesday, Cruz said on Twitter: “7 days in jail for cutting hair?? This is NUTS. And government officials don’t get to order citizens to apologize to them for daring to earn a living.”
Meanwhile, Luther said in an interview on “Hannity” on Thursday night that she felt much better after her brush with the law, adding that she stands by her decision not to apologize as Moyé had instructed her to.
“That was the last thing I was going to do, honestly,” she told Sean Hannity. “… I just couldn’t, I couldn’t bring myself to apologize.”
The judge had given her the option of avoiding prison if she apologized for what he described as her “selfish” behavior, paid a fine and kept her salon closed until Friday, when hair salons across Texas could open with restrictions.
“We were shut down March 22, so it had been several weeks that the government was kind of telling us the [small business] money was coming,” Luther said.
“The Dallas County judge, Clay Jenkins, kept pushing back the date of when we would open weeks out in advance, before we would hear any new comings of what was going on with masks or whatever.
“When he finally pushed it back a final time, I just woke up one day and I said, ‘I have to open, my stylists are calling me, they’re not making their mortgage,’” she continued. “… I’m two months behind on my mortgage.”
“My stylists were telling me that they wanted [to go] underground and go to people’s houses,” Luther added. “I just said, ‘You know, that’s not a good idea because we can’t control the environment there. We don’t know if it’s been disinfected or anything like that,’ and I just decided I would open.”
She stressed that during the time her business was open in defiance of the order, it instituted strict sanitation and social-distancing measures.
Luther said her short stint in jail was “not pleasant,” although she did have a cell to herself.
“The worst thing was that I didn’t get to call anybody when I got there, the whole first night,” she said.
“And that’s kind of scary, because I have a daughter that just turned 17 at home, and if my boyfriend wasn’t there to tell, you know, to talk to her or anything, I would not have come home and she would not have known where I was,” Luther added.