President Obama landed in southern Louisiana on Tuesday afternoon to tour areas that were damaged from flooding that hit the state several weekends ago.
The president is expected to encourage Americans to consider helping people in Baton Rouge and other affected areas and discuss if there’s more FEMA can do to help the recovery process, White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters aboard Air Force One.
Earnest also said that in less than two weeks, more than $120 million in approved aid has been distributed to people who have been affected by the flooding.
Asked if Mr. Obama has been annoyed or dismayed by people playing politics with the relief effort, Earnest said, “I think the president is used to people trying to score political points even in situations where they shouldn’t. The president certainly believes this is the kind of situation where...we’re talking about lives lost. We’re talking about a community being upended. And [he believes] that it’s an appropriate time to put politics aside, and actually focus on our responsibilities as Americans.”
Donald Trump, for instance, has criticized the president for not cutting his Martha’s Vineyard vacation short and visiting Louisiana sooner.
“President Obama should have gone to Louisiana days ago, instead of golfing. Too little, too late!” Trump tweeted Tuesday.
Trump visited the region on Friday with his vice presidential nominee Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.
Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said in a statement Monday that she plans to visit the flood-ravaged areas, but do it when it won’t disrupt the recovery efforts.
“I am committed to visiting communities affected by these floods, at a time when the presence of a political campaign will not disrupt the response, to discuss how we can and will rebuild together,” she said.