President Donald Trump visited Texas on Wednesday for a fundraising trip and to sign executive orders aimed at streamlining pipeline projects and boosting the energy sector in the United States.
Trump landed in San Antonio around 12 p.m. and was greeted on the tarmac by Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and other state officials.
The president participated in a round table with supporters and talked about immigration. He said people in border states are living in tremendous danger and that nobody has any idea how bad the problem is. Trump also said people he’s speaking with want a border wall.
The president landed at Houston’s Ellington Field just before 3 p.m. and was greeted by Texas Governor Greg Abbott upon his arrival. He then departed for his trip to Crosby where he announced the executive orders at the International Union of Operating Engineers International Training and Education Center, a union-run facility. Crosby is located about 25 miles northeast of Houston.
Trump said energy infrastructure is too often held back by special interest groups and others. He took aim at the state of New York, saying “obstruction” on a gas pipeline “does not just hurt families and workers like you, it undermines our independence and national security.”
Crosby residents were excited about the president’s visit and displayed banners, flags and welcome signs. Many gathered along the route the presidential motorcade was scheduled to travel on.
“It’s pretty cool you have a president coming to your little town,” Ray Dizel Paz, a tire shop owner, told News 88.7. Dizel Paz said he didn’t vote for Trump in 2016 but estimated that 70 percent of Crosby residents support the president.
Trump’s visit to the small Texas town even impacted local students, with the Crosby Independent School District announcing an early dismissal. The district also delayed STAAR reading exams for 5th and 8th grade students, so families could participate in the presidential visit to the small town.
Protesters also gathered in Crosby, where a recent fire at a chemical facility killed one worker and injured several others.
Stephanie Thomas, an organizer with the Texas office of Public Citizen, said in a statement that “it’s inconceivable that the President would come to the very Texas town where a deadly chemical fire raged just one week ago to announce that his administration will do less – not more – to protect workers and their communities.”
Some people also displayed signs criticizing Trump’s policies.
Several national and state lawmakers attended the event in Crosby. Republican Congressman Pete Olson said that streamlining the permitting and transportation of American energy “will ensure we continue to grow as an energy super power by supporting current and future energy projects.” Republican State Senator Paul Bettencourt said the Texas economy is “diversified” and “vibrant,” and added the executive orders “will ensure that.”
The president was scheduled to attend a round table with supporters and a fundraiser in Houston’s Lone Star Flight Museum after his visit to Crosby.
Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel said the fundraisers would bring in at least $6 million to be shared by Trump’s re-election campaign and the RNC.