The humanitarian crisis in Texas continued to rage on Thursday night, from ongoing power outages to a lack of access to safe drinking water. But the number of people losing their lives as a result of the winter emergency also continues to rise.
As Harris County Judge Linda Hidalgo said during an interview with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Texans are dying of hypothermia due to the cold, and water and carbon monoxide poisoning are a growing threat as well.
“It absolutely is and has been an overwhelming crisis,” Hidalgo said. “We’ve seen cascading impacts, water, carbon monoxide poisoning, pipes bursting, roofs caving in, hospitals with low water pressure, all kind of issues.”
Judge @LinaHidalgoTX says that what’s happening in Texas is an “overwhelming crisis.” #maddow pic.twitter.com/NFWcNR6BHp
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) February 19, 2021
It absolutely is and has been an overwhelming crisis. I just actually recently got updated numbers on the hypothermia deaths, just the tip of the iceberg, but seven very sad stories just here in the county as the fog of war settles a little bit and we get details. We’ve seen cascading impacts, water, carbon monoxide poisoning, pipes bursting, roofs caving in, hospitals with low water pressure, all kind of issues. So we take care of ourselves as best we can locally. We’ve got committed and creative emergency response professionals, but part of my discussion with the governor is how we can together advocate for an emergency disaster declaration from the federal government and that’s the discussion I had today with the White House as well as FEMA, is this is far beyond the ability of local governments, for example, to adequately recover from.
Republicans have turned Texas into a “failed state”
Republicans often point to Texas as a model for the rest of the country. The United States would be far better off if we just adopt the policies implemented in the Lone Star State, they claim.
But as almost-Sen. Beto O’Rourke said this week, the GOP – led by officials like Gov. Greg Abbot and Sen. Ted Cruz – has turned Texas into a “failed 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 said.
Denying climate change and promoting deregulation policies might play well to the Fox News audience, but it has clearly failed millions of Texans this week.
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Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.