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Biden to visit Florida on Saturday to tour hurricane damage

The president approved disaster declarations for seven counties in Florida that were affected by Hurricane Idalia.
Biden to visit Florida on Saturday to tour hurricane damage
Posted at 1:44 PM, Aug 31, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-31 15:45:04-04

President Joe Biden plans to visit Florida on Saturday to tour the damage left behind by Hurricane Idalia. 

The Category 3 storm made landfall Wednesday morning in the state's Big Bend region.

Biden delivered pizza and visited with FEMA staff in Washington on Thursday. He thanked them for their work in responding to the recent hurricanes in Florida and Hawaii.

In a brief set of remarks, Biden said he spoke with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Thursday morning to tell him that the request for a disaster declaration was approved. 

The declaration will provide for additional funding and resources for Citrus, Dixie, Hamilton, Lafayette, Levy, Suwannee and Taylor County. 

Biden added on Thursday that the federal government will support people who had homes damaged or destroyed in the storm. 

SEE MORE: Hurricane Center nearly nailed Idalia forecast 4 days before landfall

Noting the effects of climate change, Biden implored lawmakers to appropriate more money to respond to future disasters. 

"We need to do it in September," he said. "We can’t wait.”

Biden's visit to Florida comes as DeSantis is trying to secure the Republican nomination for president to challenge President Biden in 2024. The Florida governor has been a major critic of Biden, criticizing his policies on the debate stage last week. However, they have been able to put politics aside during emergency situations in the past. 

DeSantis greeted Biden last year after Hurricane Ian devastated parts of Florida. Biden even complimented DeSantis for his response to the storm, saying he had done a “good job."

 

SEE MORE: First GOP debate: Ramaswamy stands out, DeSantis quiet, Trump absent


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