FOI reveals Texas governor was told to wear ‘disaster casual’ as winter storms struck

‘His entire career and leadership is disaster casual,’ wrote one Twitter user

Oliver O'Connell
New York
Thursday 11 March 2021 21:25
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As freezing severe winter weather bore down on Texas in February, Governor Greg Abbott warned the state’s residents to stay home, stay off the roads, and conserve energy.

The ensuing catastrophe of Winter Storm Uri left millions without electricity, heating, and running water. Dozens died of hypothermia and it could be one of the most costly insurance claims ever for the state as frozen pipes led to flooding and collapsed ceilings.

While much of the blame has been placed on a power grid and generation system that was not prepared for winter weather, despite a decade-old report advising it, there are many questions as to whether the governor did enough to prepare the state.

A Freedom of Information Act request by one journalist did reveal that thought had at least gone into Mr Abbott’s sartorial choices for the day he addressed Texans, with staff advising that he opt for a “Disaster Casual” look.

Nicole Cobler, a state politics reporter for the Austin Statesman, put in the request for the governor’s schedule on Saturday 13 February as part of her reporting, revealing the note to the governor.

“When a records request gives you this gem,” she tweeted. “Recommended attire on Gov. Abbott’s official schedule as a historic freeze struck Texas? ‘Disaster casual’.”

Ms Cobler followed up her tweet adding “I also regularly rock disaster casual: A tear stained shirt, leggings and unwashed hair.”

It’s a look that many of us are more than familiar with over the last 12 months of Covid-19 lockdowns.

Twitter users were keen to share their thoughts on the fashion advice for Mr Abbott.

“This is all he wears because his entire career and leadership is disaster casual,” wrote @RyanRice.

Another suggested that it could be his re-election campaign slogan.

@FootMethod responded: “This implies the existence of ‘formal disaster attire’.”

In a slight at former first lady Melania Trump and the Zara outerwear she wore to visit the southern border, @IlanaCT’s response read: “Was it a jacket that said ‘i don’t really care do u?’”

“Some folks’ attire is always a disaster,” added @capitolcrowd.

Governor Abbott has faced calls for his resignation following the chaos caused by the February storms that brought the state to its knees.

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