Beto O’Rourke Says Texas Is ‘Nearing A Failed State’ Due To Republican Leadership Amid Deadly Cold Snap
Former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke said Texas is ‘nearing a failed state’ due to its Republican leadership, with millions of residents currently left without power.
O’Rourke, a Democrat who served in Texas’s 16th congressional district until 2018, discussed the ongoing extreme weather in Texas in an interview on Tuesday evening, February 16.
The state is currently experiencing some of its coldest temperatures in more than 30 years, causing a loss of power and water and prompting President Joe Biden to declare a state of emergency.
Discussing the ‘upsetting and desperate messages’ being shared by Texas residents, O’Rourke told MSNBC that the situation is actually ‘worse than you are hearing’.
Folks are very desperate, they’re suffering, and as you know far too many have died already. I worry about what’s going to happen over the next 24 hours. Almost every major city in Texas tonight will see sub-freezing temperatures and many of them will not have electricity, or power, or in many instances water.
O’Rourke expressed his belief that many aspects of the situation were ‘avoidable’, noting that the loss of electricity in the state stems from the deregulation of Texas’ electricity grid, which has ‘created an incentive to actually not weatherise or protect against these events so that some of your plants can be shut down and you can profit from a spike in prices for energy’.
Texas is the only state in the lower 48 states with its own electrical grid, due in large part to the state’s resistance to federal regulation, Forbes reports. When the Arctic storm hit the state this week, a surge in demand for power caused the grid to fail.
O’Rourke slammed the Republican Party and Texas Governor Greg Abbott for focussing on ‘stupid culture battles’ while the state is dealing with ‘very real emergencies’.
The energy capitol of north America cannot provide the energy needed to warm and power people’s homes in this great state. We are nearing a failed state in Texas and it has nothing to do with God or natural disasters.
It has everything to do with the leadership and those in positions of public trust who have failed us.
In a statement released on Tuesday, Abbott blamed the power outage on Texas’s electricity grid, saying it had been ‘anything but reliable’. He reportedly later told Fox News that the power outages were caused directly by the state’s use of wind and solar power.
Approximately four million people in Texas are without power, including 1.4 million people in Houston and around a quarter of homes in Dallas.
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