— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) August 28, 2017
During an interview with CBS This Morning, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott revealed that President Trump would not be visiting Houston during his trip to Texas on Tuesday. On Sunday, the president promised that he would “be going to Texas as soon as that trip can be made without causing disruption” in a series of tweets. “The focus must be life and safety,” he added. Houston wasn’t the only populated area along the Gulf Coast to get hit by Hurricane Harvey, of course, and the recent release of water from two over-capacity dams near the city has further rendered it less safe.
“The place he will be going to will not be Houston so [he] will not be getting into harm’s way or interrupting the evacuations or emergency response in the Houston area,” Gov. Abbott told CBS This Morning on Monday. “He most likely will be going closer to where the hurricane hit land, and that’s where I will be going today to meet with FEMA Administrator Brock Long.” Aside from Trump’s initial tweet, the White House officially announced the president would visit the state on Tuesday, but didn’t specify where he would go or how long the visit would last.
While Abbott’s explanation for the president’s avoiding the Houston area makes sense, that Trump is even visiting the area while Harvey still rages raises questions about the timing. According to the Weather Channel, the tropical depression won’t depart the Houston area until early Thursday, when the storm will pick up more speed and begin heading north towards Louisiana and Arkansas. So Trump’s decision to tour the areas along the Texas coast initially affected by Harvey may avoid ongoing search and rescue operations, but he may still be distracting.