The Dallas-based carrier company blamed bad weather, limited staffing and air traffic control issues for a series of flight disruptions this weekend.
"Joe Biden's illegal vaccine mandate at work!," Cruz tweeted.
Ever since Southwest mandated its 56,000 employees to get vaccinated by December 8 or risk job losses, rumors started circulating that many employees have started taking ‘leave.'
“Southwest Airlines must join our industry peers in complying with the federal government's COVID-19 vaccination directive,” said Southwest Airlines Chairman Gary Kelly. “I encourage all Southwest Employees to meet the federal directive, as quickly as possible, since we value every individual and want to ensure job security for all.”
However, Southwest called the speculation “inaccurate.”
Earlier, the Southwest Airlines Pilots Association (SWAPA) said it would file a temporary restraining order to stop the vaccine mandate. However, SWAPA has denied a role in the staffing shortage, blaming Southwest’s “poor planning" for the disruption.
"SWAPA is aware of operational difficulties affecting Southwest Airlines today due to a number of issues, but we can say with confidence that our Pilots are not participating in any official or unofficial job actions," said the Association, in a statement.
The Federal Aviation Administration also said airlines are experiencing delays due to “aircraft and crews being out of place.”