After New York and New Jersey were struck by Superstorm Sandy in 2012, 31 Senate Republicans Opposed Sandy Relief After Supporting Disaster Aid For Their Home States.
Also, More than 20 Texas representatives and senators voted against Sandy aid, including Senator John Cornyn and Senator Ted Cruz.
Now Texas is suffering from an Arctic winter storm that has crippled the states’ electric grid and water supply. Texas power grid was “seconds or minutes” away from catastrophic failure, officials say; Texas hospitals are running out of water amid power outages. Some are evacuating patients for safety.
President Joe Biden has declared a state of emergency, and ordered FEMA to provide 60 generators and fuel to Texas.
Jill and I are keeping Texas, Oklahoma, and other impacted states in our prayers. I’ve declared states of emergency, authorized FEMA to provide generators and supplies, and am ready to fulfill additional requests. Please heed the instructions of local officials and stay safe.
— President Biden (@POTUS) February 18, 2021
The same incompetent Republican state leaders responsible for the catastrophic failure of the Texas power grid are still utterly incapable of doing what is necessary to rescue Texas’ citizens. Biden Sent Texas 60 Generators And Republicans Still Haven’t Delivered Them:
The 60 generators and fuel that the Biden administration had FEMA send to Texas are still sitting at the airport in the state and awaiting delivery instructions from Republicans.
This is the situation in Texas:
NEW: The 60 generators FEMA sent to Texas are, as of this morning, sitting in a staging area in Ft. Worth waiting for delivery instructions.
10,000 gallons of diesel fuel also standing by. FEMA officials are waiting for instructions from Texas officials about were to send it
— Erin Banco (@ErinBanco) February 18, 2021
The federal government is trying to help, but Republicans in Texas continue to harm their own people.
One can’t be sure whether the needed supplies are not being delivered through neglect or incompetence, but the key takeaway is that millions of Texans need help.
President Biden has sent help, but Republicans in Texas are standing in the way.
Let me explain something to these Texas politicians, who are not used to this kind of winter weather.
I am originally from the Great White North of Minnesota. Any mayor from across the northern tier of the country will tell you that the failure to plow the snow after a storm and to restore utilities in a timely manner after a power outage is your ticket to defeat in the next election. It has happened many times, over many years. Snowstorm Mayors: Don’t Blow This. It should apply to the Texas Governor as well.
Texas likes to say it does everything big, like Texas. This is truly a Texas-size fuck-up by the state’s Republican leaders. Voters should not forget this failure come the next election. Throw the bums out!
Texas has not elected any Democratic candidate to a statewide office since 1994. After more than two decades of one-party rule, it is time for a change.
As former Representative Beto O’Rourke says, “In Texas, you have an example of what happens when a state is governed by those who do not believe in government, to begin with.” Beto O’Rourke Blasts Texas GOP Leaders: Winter Disaster a Result of Electing ‘Government Leaders Who Don’t Believe in Government’:
Former Representative Beto O’Rourke had harsh words for Republican leadership in his home state as Texas deals with a catastrophic arctic blast that has left millions without power and 24 reported deaths so far.
Appearing Thursday morning on MSNBC, Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski asked her guest how he assesses the job done by Governor Greg Abbott and also the Texas leaders in Washington, “specifically Ted Cruz.” Alleged images of Senator Ted Cruz dipping his freezing state to a Cancun resort have sparked predictable outrage.
Caught tonight! @TedCruz fleeing to CANCUN while his home state freezes with no running water or electricity
— Make it Rain ☔️🎸 (@Trx1000) February 18, 2021
As 3 million Texans shivered in the dark, Sen. Ted Cruz jetted off to Cancun with his family, outed instantly by fellow vacationers and berated by critics for abandoning constituents during an epic statewide power crisis.
UPDATE: It gets worse. The Daily Beast reports: Cruz asked Houston cops to escort him to the airport.
O’Rourke laid into his Republican counterparts in his home state.
“In Texas, you have an example of what happens when a state is governed by those who do not believe in government, to begin with,” O’Rourke noted.
“The Republican Party, as you know Mika, has had absolute control of the state Senate, the state house, the governor, the lieutenant governor, every state-wide office for the last 20 years,” he explained. “So, the decision to deregulate ERCOT (Electric Reliability Council of Texas) and to ensure it is not connected to the national grid; to fail to weatherize our power generators, whether it’s coal, or gas, or nuclear, or solar or wind.”
Also appearing on MNBC’s All In With Chris Hayes, Beto O’Rourke said Republican Leadership Is Turning Texas Into A ‘Failed State’:
Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) said that the massive power outages caused by snowstorms in Texas this week spotlight skewed priorities within the Lone Star state that inept GOP leaders have focused on.
“We are nearing a failed state in Texas,” O’Rouke told MSNBC host Chris Hayes on Tuesday. “And it has nothing to do with God, or natural disasters. It has everything to do with the leadership and those in the positions of public trust who have failed us.”
While they focused on bathroom bills, “show me your papers” legislation and fighting with sports teams over the Star Spangled Banner, 30 million Texans were left vulnerable to uncontrolled Covid spread, a bungled vaccine rollout and now this “rolling” power blackout. 2/4
— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) February 16, 2021
State leaders don’t get to say that they didn’t see this coming. Energy experts and State House Dems, among others, were warning of this for years. Abbott chose to ignore the facts, the science and the tough decisions and now Texans will once again pay the price. 4/4
— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) February 17, 2021
O’Rouke argued that the blackouts hitting Texas were avoidable, saying that the deregulation of the state’s electric grid had resulted in many energy companies being unprepared for extreme weather events.
As of Wednesday morning, about 2.7 million households in Texans were still left without power, according to the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT).
He also blamed Gov. Greg Abbott and other top Texas Republicans for focusing on “stupid culture battles.”
Among these battles, O’Rouke highlighted Abbott’s efforts to turn Texas into a sanctuary state for the National Rifle Association, as well as Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick’s legislative priority to require the Dallas Mavericks play the national anthem during their basketball games, dubbed the “Star-Spangled Banner Act.”
Instead of focusing on such matters, the Texas leaders should focus on more important matters such as COVID-19 vaccine distribution, the serious economic problems caused by the pandemic and ensuring that the state’s electrical grid is improved.
“The energy capitol of North America cannot provide the energy needed to warm and power people’s homes in this great state,” said O’Rouke. Emphasizing that climate change was sure to bring more unpredictable weather disasters in the near future, he added, “We know this stuff is coming. What we don’t know is whether or not leaders are prepared to make the tough political decisions to prepare us for that.”