Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney briefly discussed the wildfires in Texas before the Republican presidential debate in California.
Asked by Romney whether the fires had been brought under control, Perry responded, "It's still too early to tell. They're serious; they're mean."
Perry left his home state Wednesday and flew to California to debate his Republican presidential rivals.
Firefighters are battling blazes across Texas. The most destructive is around Bastrop, about 25 miles from Austin.
Firefighters have game some ground on that fire, which is the most destructive wildfires in Texas history.
The blaze has left at least two people dead, destroyed 800 homes and blackened about 45 square miles around Bastrop.