Paxton’s campaign spokesperson, Ian Prior, would not tell CNN when the couple had departed or returned but said the attorney general “did not leave Texas until after power had returned to most of the state, including his own home.”
“Attorney General Paxton attended a previously planned meeting with the attorney general of Utah to discuss several matters,” Prior said, listing a law enforcement scenario simulator demonstration and “strategizing” on a Google lawsuit as some of the reasons for the travel.
“I started having second thoughts almost the moment I sat down on the plane, because on the one hand, all of us who are parents have a responsibility to take care of our kids, take care of our family. That’s something Texans have been doing across the state,” said Cruz, who had said in an earlier statement that he had flown to Mexico because his daughters had asked to take a trip and he was trying to be a “good dad.”
As an official elected to federal office, Cruz doesn’t have an on-the-ground role in the response to the storm, but natural disasters are often a time in which constituents reach out to their elected officials for help and access to resources.
As Texas attorney general, Paxton is responsible for overseeing key aspects of the state’s response to the devastating winter storm.
While state officials work to turn the lights back on for the Texas households still in the dark and to address widespread water disruptions, some residents are facing damage that could take weeks — or months — to recover from.