The couple met with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and other state leaders while touring the Harris County Emergency Operations Center and the Houston Food Bank. President Biden spoke at the Houston Texans‘ home, NRG Stadium, which is the site of a federal COVID-19 vaccination site.
“When a crisis hits our states, it’s not a Republican or Democrat who’s hurting. It’s a fellow American who’s hurting,” the president said.
“Our prayers are with you in the aftermath of this winter storm,” he added. “We will be true partners to help you recover and build from these storms and this pandemic and this economic crisis. We are in for the long haul.
The storm brought cold temperatures, ice and some snow to Texas and hindered the state’s power grid, leaving residents and businesses without power for extended periods of time. The disruption left millions without heat and drinkable water when treatment plants lost electricity.
Dozens of deaths have been attributed to the winter storm.
The Bidens departed Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland for Houston late Friday morning and were scheduled to arrive at about noon CST.
Both Bidens visited the Houston Food Bank, and Jill Biden helped package food and water.
“Although we’re encouraged by the progress that has been made and we’re seeing the numbers come down dramatically right now in terms of who needs to still go and boil water in Texas, we will continue to look for ways to help through this next phase of recovery,” deputy national security adviser Dr. Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall said aboard Air Force One Friday afternoon en route to Houston.