Harvey may make reelection easier as public officials handle Houston in the aftermath

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner speaks with the media during a business forum in Havana, Cuba, Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. The forum was attended by business representatives from Houston and Havana, to explore opportunities in areas of health, sports, energy, commerce and art, according to local state-run media Cubadebate. (Ismael Francisco, Cubadebate via AP)

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How elected officials manage a major natural disaster and its aftermath can make or break their careers.

According to a report by the Houston Chronicle, though, people appear to be looking favorably on how Texas’ elected officials are dealing with the effects of Harvey – some even predicting an easier election race for the GOP in 2018.

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“Harvey has probably done as much as anything to save Republicans from tougher races,” Political Analyst Brandon Rottinghaus said in an interview.

Rottinghaus said he believes Texas Governor Greg Abbott will probably see a boost in his approval ratings in communities effected by the storm.

Abbott made it clear during the disaster he was in contact with the federal government to secure resources, and regularly released updates.

He also arranged for the National Guard to be mobilized by the time the storm hit.

His only issues, however, was seemingly with Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, specifically on whether people should evacuate.

As part of further miscommunications, Governor Abbott said there was no gas shortage in the state when, at the time, gas stations across Texas were without fuel.

Like the governor, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner was criticized by some residents and people across the nation for not ordering an evacuation ahead of Harvey.

However, he defended his position during a press conference when confronted with the option again:

“You literally cannot put 6.5 million people on the road. The decision we made was a smart one. It was in the best interest of Houstonians.”

Harris County elected Judge Ed Emmett called for massive flood control restructuring after the storm, even though the level of infrastructure reform it would take would be extremely costly.

As they continue to navigate Harvey’s aftermath and direct relief efforts, the eyes of Texas will be upon them and training for these officials moving forward.

RELATED: Former Shell Exec Named ‘Czar’ of Harvey Recovery

If you need or would like to help in Houston, read more here.

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