Rick Perry suggests Texans prefer blackouts to federal energy regulation

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Rick Perry once wanted to get rid of the U.S. Department of Energy. Now, he's apparently fine with temporarily ridding Texas of energy altogether.

As the former Republican governor of Texas and energy secretary under former President Donald Trump, Perry had a lot to say about the state's ongoing blackouts amid an unprecedented winter storm. But even as it becomes clear Texas' energy system needs a major overhaul, Perry said Texans would rather remain in the dark if it meant keeping the federal government out, he told House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's (R-Calif.) office in a blog post published Wednesday.

Perry, like other conservatives, blamed Texas' renewable energy sources for the outages, and alleged the Biden administration's focus on decreasing fossil fuel dependence would make this happen again. Perry did note that natural gas supplies most of Texas' power, not solar and wind, but still claimed Texas would refuse to adopt more of those renewable sources no matter how heavily the federal government subsidizes them.

"Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business," Perry said. "Try not to let whatever the crisis of the day is take your eye off of having a resilient grid that keeps America safe personally, economically, and strategically."

More than 4 million households and energy customers in Texas first lost power on Sunday, and 2.5 million remain out as of Wednesday afternoon as temperatures remain near freezing. Several people have died because of the weather, with some people reportedly suffering carbon monoxide poisoning as they turned on ovens or sat in cars to keep warm.

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