News Roundup: Two Texas Congress Members Lead Border Delegation

Our daily look at Texas headlines.

By Becky FogelJuly 1, 2019 1:27 pm

The Standard’s news roundup gives you a quick hit of interesting, sometimes irreverent, and breaking news stories from all over the state.

Democratic members of Congress led a delegation to El Paso and Clint in West Texas, Monday, to visit several immigrant detention facilities.

The trip was prompted in part by reports that hundreds of migrant children were being held at a U.S. Customs and Border Protection station without adequate food, water, or sanitation.

U.S. Reps. Joaquin Castro of San Antonio and Veronica Escobar of El Paso head the group of at least a dozen lawmakers. Both are members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. Monday morning, Escobar told CNN the conditions at these detention facilities change day-to-day.

“And because as members of Congress we don’t have the ability, even with our oversight obligations to drop in and present ourselves unannounced, it’s hard to know exactly what the conditions are on any given day, so we have to plan ahead, we have to request to be allowed access inside, what I’m hoping is that my colleagues and I will be able to see everything,” Escobar said.

Escobar added that U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials will be joining the delegation as they tour the facilities.

Federal transportation officials are investigating a small plane crash that took place in Addison, just north of Dallas, Sunday morning. All ten people aboard the aircraft died. There were two crew members and eight passengers. The small twin-engine plane crashed into an airport hangar shortly after taking off. The resulting fire destroyed the plane. The airport hangar was vacant when the crash took place aside from two other aircraft.

Members of the National Transportation Safety Board arrived in Texas Sunday. Board Vice Chairman Bruce Landsberg spoke at a press conference Sunday night.

“We will not be doing any analysis here, this is just the fact-gathering stage. And I would suspect that within possibly two weeks we’ll have a preliminary report out after we’ve gathered all the initial information,” Landsberg said.

Landsberg added the flight had been headed to St. Petersburg, Florida. He called on witnesses to share any footage they have of the incident.

Democratic presidential hopefuls Julián Castro and Beto O’Rourke spent last weekend campaigning in their home state of Texas. Both candidates had stops in Austin, Houston, and Clint.

Castro, who has been riding a wave of enthusiasm since last week’s Democratic primary debates, also appeared on three Sunday talk shows.

He told ABC’s “This Week” his push to decriminalize illegal border crossings will not lead to open borders as critics claim.

“There’s no we can call that open borders because we have 654 miles of fencing, we have thousands of personnel at the border, we have planes, we have helicopters, boats, security cameras, guns,” Castro said.

O’Rourke, for his part, appeared on the CBS program “Face the Nation.”