Speed Reads

thank you for your service

Ted Cruz passed out water, BBQ in Texas this weekend. AOC raised $5 million for Texans.

Instead of returning from a beach vacation to Mexico this weekend, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and some photographers helped distribute bottled water Saturday to Texans who still don't have potable water a week after an unusually long and frigid winter storm ground the state to a halt. On Sunday, Cruz posted photos of himself slicing brisket and posing with uniformed law enforcement officers, for Houston firefighters and other first responders.

While Cruz was out in the suddenly warm Houston sunshine — and enduring even more mockery for his short-lived Cancun getaway, this time on SNL — Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) was continuing to raise money for Texans and, on Saturday, distributing food at the Houston Food Bank with Reps. Sylvia Garcia (D-Texas) and Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas).

On Sunday night, she reported that her fundraising effort, launched Thursday, hit the $5 million mark.

The funds AOC raised will go to food banks around Texas, Feeding Texas, Family Eldercare, and the Bridge Homeless Recovery Center, and other nonprofits, Houston Public Media reports. Cruz had some helpful information for Texans, too, via the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Along with the warm weather melting the snow, Texans mostly have their power back — all but about 18,000 Sunday night, down from more than 4 million last week — and water service is coming back online, often with orders to boil it before drinking. At least 32 people Texans died from the storm, including an 11-year-old boy in Conroe, Christian Pavon, who was found dead of suspected hypothermia after two nights in an uninsulated trailer with his family.