FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 12, 2018
New Ad Slams John Culberson’s Record of Prioritizing His Pet Projects Over Houston’s Flooding Needs
John Culberson’s record shows he is more focused on his personal hobbies than protecting families across this district from flooding.
Houston, TX – Lizzie Fletcher today released her fourth ad of the general election titled “My House.” The ad focuses on John Culberson’s nearly two-decade tenure in Congress highlighting his failure to protect Houston families that have faced repeated flooding and proactively fund flooding infrastructure projects, while instead pushing increased funding for projects that are of interest to him.
“My House” details how Culberson’s personal interests have taken priority over local flood mitigation. Families included in the ad each experienced multiple instances of flooding in their homes and businesses, from Tropical Storm Allison, to the 2015 Memorial Day Flood, to the 2016 Tax Day Flood, to Hurricane Harvey in 2017.
“We deserve a partner who listens to us and fights for us—not one who just reacts when a major disaster hits,” Fletcher said. “It is essential that our representative in Washington makes us the priority, and John Culberson’s record shows the opposite when it comes to flooding.”
Taking office in 2001, the same year Tropical Storm Allison hit Houston, John Culberson has repeatedly acted against the interests of Houston families. The ad highlights two of his votes: against funding to fix state-owned dams (in 2007) and against Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funding that would have allowed states like Texas to prepare for floods (in 2013).
Instead of proactively funding disaster preparedness and infrastructure improvements, Culberson prioritized a project for one his personal interests: a telescope in Chile. In fact, he pushed for $74 million more than was originally requested.
According to Science Magazine, Culberson says he “learned from the Katy Freeway project that you can speed up completion of big engineering projects by front-loading the funding [...] referring to a major expansion of Interstate 10 [in] Houston, Texas, a decade ago.” He further explained, “that helps you to lock in costs and speed up the overall construction timeline.”
And this wasn’t the first time Culberson used his position to further his interests. According to the same 2018 article: “This year’s spending bill also includes $740 million to accelerate a two-part NASA mission to Jupiter’s moon Europa. He more than doubled NASA’s $265 million request, to $545 million, to continue work on a spacecraft that will orbit Europa, and added $195 million for a lander that is not in NASA’s current plans.”
If John Culberson understands federal infrastructure projects, and the intricate funding structures, why has he chosen to exact his influence to fund a Chilean telescope and travel to Europa, rather than to fully fund and complete much-needed projects to update our bayous, bridges, and detention areas?
Even the Houston Chronicle’s Editorial Board took notice, stating this past weekend of John Culberson: “His career has been spent promoting his own pet projects rather than serving the local needs of his home district. That’s why it took the greatest natural disaster in Houston history to compel him to act with necessary passion.”
“My House” can be viewed by clicking here: https://youtu.be/yC2uaGjgBO4
Transcript “My House:”
“I’m Lizzie Fletcher and I approved this message.”
My business flooded in 2001.
My house in 2015.
John Culberson has been in Congress since Tropical
Storm Allison … but he’s had different priorities.
He got six hundred eighty million dollars for a telescope
in South America …
But Culberson voted against funding to fix dams in Texas.
And against FEMA funding to prepare for floods.
The Houston Chronicle says John Culberson has spent his career “promoting his own pet
projects rather than serving the … needs of his …district.”
Lizzie is the Democratic nominee in Texas’ 7th Congressional District, a district that Hillary Clinton carried in the 2016 election. CNN, Sabato’s Crystal Ball, and Daily Kos have listed Texas’ 7th Congressional District as a key “toss-up” race in their 2018 election rankings. Lizzie is the first woman partner at AZA, a Houston law firm, where she has represented businesses and Houstonians from all walks of life, helping them find solutions to complex problems. She has been recognized by her peers as one of the ‘Best Lawyers in America’ in U.S. News and World Report. She co-founded Planned Parenthood Young Leaders, and currently serves on the boards of directors for Writers in the Schools (WITS) and Open Dance Project.