In a Monday appearance on NBC's "Late Night," host Seth Meyers asked Cruz about a viral clip of the senator speaking at an event in New Hampshire.
"The Obama economy is a disaster. Obamacare is a train wreck and the Obama-Clinton foreign policy of leading from behind -- the whole world's on fire," Cruz tells the audience in the clip, prompting a young girl to call out "The world is on fire?"
Cruz noted that many media outlets covered the video with headlines like "Cruz terrifies little girl."
"By the end of it I was Freddy Krueger," he told Meyers. "I had the fingernails, it was terrible. The funny thing is it's not true."
Cruz said he'd spoken by phone with the girl's mother, who had appeared on a Boston talk radio show earlier Monday to defend him. He said the woman told him her daughter was "incredibly happy."
Meyers later used Cruz's "world's on fire" comment to pivot to the subject of climate change.
"I think the world's on fire, literally. Hottest year on record," Meyers said. "But you're not there yet, right?"
"My view actually is simple: debates on this should follow science and should follow data," Cruz responded. "Many of the alarmists on global warming, they got a problem because the science doesn't back them up."
Cruz argued that satellite data going back 17 years shows there's been "zero" warming. But that argument appears to stem from a flawed 2011 study that gained traction among climate change skeptics when Forbes covered it under the headline "New NASA Data Blow Gaping Hole In Global Warming Alarmism."
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