Alpine railroadLast night, Congressman Will Hurd (R-TX23) voted to end Amtrak service to Alpine and the Big Bend area. As most West Texans know, the Big Bend Region doesn't have commercial air service and much of it is not even served by bus lines. A huge number of Texans depend on Amtrak's Sunset Limited line not only for transportation but also to bring in tourism dollars.

Congressman Hurd's vote was in favor of an amendment to the Department of Transportation appropriations bill offered by Pete Sessions (R-TX). The amendment would have ended funding for Amtrak's Sunset Limited train - the train that passes through San Antonio, Del Rio, Alpine and El Paso. 

The amendment failed because 35 House Republicans - most of whom represent districts through which the Sunset Limited runs - protected their districts and joined Democrats in voting against it.

"In Alpine, we all understand the importance of Amtrak to our tourism economy and for our transportation needs. It is unfortunate that Congressman Hurd was not among the bipartisan group of congressional leaders who fought on our behalf last night. 

Thankfully that group of common sense Democrats and Republicans were able to keep Rep. Hurd from shutting down the train service that is vital to our region," said Pete Gallego, candidate for TX-23.