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Abbott: Houston response shows ‘what Texas is all about’

Citizens with boats in Texas get to work after Harvey to ‘go try to save some lives’.

HOUSTON — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said Monday that the Houston community’s response in the wake of Hurricane Harvey — including the scores of residents who have risked their lives to rescue others — shows “what Texas is all about.”

“All of our attention is focused on saving lives,” Abbott told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on “New Day.”

Citizens with boats in Texas get to work after Harvey to ‘go try to save some lives’.

“As you mentioned, it’s been so heartwarming to see not only the first responders go in there and save lives and rescue people, but Texans helping Texans, which is the way that we always do it.”

That, he said, is “what Texas is all about.”

Abbott said he would not cast blame on Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner for not issuing an evacuation order. The two men appeared to publicly disagree over the decision over the weekend, but Abbott told Camerota he had a “great conversation” with Turner Sunday night.

“Listen, the evacuation issue is something that can’t be second-guessed at this time because we have to focus our priority on saving lives,” explained Abbott.

Abbott also said he’s looking ahead to the rising water in Houston, “which will continue.”

Citizens with boats in Texas get to work after Harvey to ‘go try to save some lives’.

He said he and other officials are looking forward to the arrival of President Donald Trump on Tuesday as well.

Trump has been “very gracious and very helpful,” said Abbott, adding that he’d like to hear from the President that he understands the “magnitude of the damage that Texas has faced.”

“This is going to be a very long-term project, helping Texas dig out,” Abbot noted. “This is going to be a year or multi-year process and I assume the President will be echoing that and I assume the President will be very concerned about what he sees, about the damage that Texas has suffered.”