MIDLAND, Texas (Nexstar) — President Donald Trump visited Texas Wednesday, July 29, for a campaign fundraiser in Odessa, followed by a tour of an oil rig in Midland at Double Eagle Energy.
The President addressed members of the oil and gas industry at Double Eagle Energy. There, he announced and signed four pipeline permits, which in part, will allow Texas to export crude oil to Mexico.
Trump also announced at Double Eagle Energy he would be extending export authorizations.
“We will maintain this dominant position long into the future, we’ll never lose this position, by announcing today that export authorizations for American liquefied natural gas can now be extended through the year 2050,” President Trump said.
The oil and gas industry, like many others, took a tough hit when the COVID-19 pandemic brought travel to a halt. Even before Wednesday’s event, Trump has touted his administration’s efforts to reduce regulations and incentivize private investments for the industry.
On Wednesday, Trump laid out his administration’s response.
“We opened up 30 billion barrels of space in strategic petroleum reserves, allowing American companies to store oil to be sold at a later time. And we filled up our 75 million barrels in the strategic reserve,” Trump said.
But, some Texans think the federal government could be doing more to help the industry recover, like Justin Slaughter.
“I really do believe that he’s done a pretty good job of committing to our industry, I think probably better than presidents in the past. With that said, that doesn’t change the the issues we’re dealing with every day in the Permian Basin and that doesn’t change it the families losing their jobs,” Slaughter said.
Slaughter said he hopes Trump will listen to members of the community to fully understand what West Texas is going through.
“Right now there’s obviously work to do I mean, Midland’s hurting,” Slaughter said.
Texas Democrats criticized the President’s visit during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The state of Texas is a hotspot, and why? Because this president together with our governor have failed us,” Rep. Sylvia Garcia said Wednesday. “They’re more concerned with trying to cover up their failures than they are with covering up their faces with a mask.”