A contrite Ted Cruz apologized after a joke he made at Vice President Joe Biden's expense at a gathering in Howell, Michigan Wednesday evening.
He had talked about Biden at a dinner for the Livingston County Republicans.
Detroit News reporter Chad Livengood tweeted Cruz's comments and wrote about the joke. According to the story Livengood wrote for The Detroit News, Cruz continued, "Honestly, it works," and then added, "The next party you're at, just walk up to someone and say, 'Vice President Joe Biden' and just close your mouth. They will crack up laughing."
Livengood asked Cruz why he'd made the joke about Biden, whose son, Beau Biden, died over the weekend.
Cruz then told Livengood that the younger Biden's death was "heartbreaking and tragic."
Later, Cruz took to Facebook and Twitter to apologize for the remark.
"It was a mistake to use an old joke about Joe Biden during his time of grief, and I sincerely apologize. The loss of his son is heartbreaking and tragic, and our prayers are very much with the Vice President and his family," Cruz wrote.
Beau Biden served as Delaware's attorney general from 2007-2015 and had been planning a run for governor of the state in 2016. He suffered a mild stroke in 2010. According to the vice president's office, he was diagnosed with brain cancer in August 2013. He had undergone surgery in Houston, followed by radiation and chemotherapy treatments and "was given a clean bill of health" in November 2013. This spring, he suffered a recurrence and sought aggressive treatment at Walter Reed Army Medical Center last month. He died on May 30, at the age of 46.