The Texas humanitarian crisis continued to rage Thursday night, from persistent power outages to a lack of access to safe drinking water. But the number of people who lose their lives as a result of the winter emergency continues to rise.
Harris County judge Linda Hidalgo said during an interview with MSNBC's Rachel Maddow, Texans are dying of hypothermia from the cold, and water and carbon monoxide poisoning is a growing threat too.
"It is absolutely an overwhelming crisis," said Hidalgo. "We've seen cascading bumps, water, carbon monoxide poisoning, burst pipes, collapsing roofs, hospitals with low water pressure, and all kinds of problems."
Judge @LinaHidalgoTX says what is happening in Texas is an "overwhelming crisis". #maddow pic.twitter.com/NFWcNR6BHp
– PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) February 19, 2021
It is and was absolutely an overwhelming crisis. I got updated numbers on hypothermic deaths recently, just the tip of the iceberg, but seven very sad stories here in the county as the fog of war calms down a bit and we learn details. We've seen cascading bumps, water, carbon monoxide poisoning, burst pipes, collapsing roofs, hospitals with low water pressure, and all kinds of problems. That's why we look after ourselves as best we can on site. We have dedicated and creative experts on emergency response, but part of my discussion with the governor is how we can work together for an emergency disaster statement from the federal government, and that was the discussion I have today with the White House and FEMA have led. This is well beyond the ability of local governments, for example, to adequately recover.
Republicans have turned Texas into a "failed state"
Republicans often refer to Texas as a role model for the rest of the country. The United States would be far better off if we just adopted the guidelines implemented in the Lone Star State, they claim.
But as Sen. Beto O'Rourke said this week, the GOP – led by officials like Governor Greg Abbot and Senator Ted Cruz – had turned Texas into a "failed state."
"In Texas you have an example of what happens when a state is ruled by those who initially don't believe in a government," O’Rourke said.
Opposing climate change and promoting deregulation may be good for Fox News audiences, but it has clearly failed millions of Texans this week.
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Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He received his Bachelor of Arts 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 the Outreach Organizer of the Affordable Care Act in 2014, helping Northeast Ohio residents get health insurance.