As Texas continues to grapple with the weather crisis, with thousands still lacking power and a new influx of water complications hitting the state, communication between President Joe Biden and Texas Governor Greg Abbott has been confirmed.
“Tonight, I called Governor Greg Abbott to discuss the ongoing situation in Texas and identify ways we can support the state’s recovery from this storm,” announced Biden Thursday night. “I made clear to the Governor that I’ll work relentlessly to get his state what they need.”
The President has expressed his intention to visit the state: “I had planned on being in Texas at the beginning of next week, but I don’t want to be a burden….if in fact it’s concluded I can do it without creating a burden, I plan on going.”
Millions of Texans have been told to boil and conserve water as the state is faced with water shortages, burst pipes and contamination concerns. At least 30 people have died across the U.S. as a result of the extreme winter weather. The President approved a federal emergency declaration in the state on Sunday and federal forces have since been mobilized to supply the state with generators, water, and blankets. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is also preparing to move diesel fuel into Texas to ensure the availability of backup power for critical infrastructure. Meanwhile, Abbott has criticized the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) for its handling of the crisis and called for the winterization of the state’s energy system in order to avoid future widespread power outages.
In an earlier tweet the President had expressed his concern for the state: “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.”