State Rep. Gary Gates is under fire from his constituents for leaving House District 28 on Wednesday as much of Fort Bend County struggled without water and power, according to the Houston Chronicle.
After losing power Tuesday, Gates left his home via his private jet Wednesday night and traveled to Orlando, Fla., sparking outrage among many who believe the freshman lawmaker should have remained in his district.
“It really would have been nice to have a state representative helping on the ground, working at a warming center, packing food, etc. rather than immediately off on a private plane when the going got tough,” said Brian Walz, one of Gates’ constituents.
Gates acknowledged the frustration of his critics, but stated that the decision to leave Texas was based on the needs of his family.
“My wife is still recovering from an illness she has been battling for two weeks, and the room of my adult daughter, who is mentally handicapped and still lives with us, flooded,” Gates said.
With no other options, Gates said, he and his family flew to Florida.
The chastisement of Gates is similar to that of Sen. Ted Cruz, who was seen boarding a flight for Cancun on Thursday.