Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, visited areas in Louisiana affected by mass flooding Friday, following days of unrelenting rain. The two men met with residents and assisted in the handing out of relief aid.
The International Red Cross has declared the devastation wrought by flooding the worst natural disaster to strike the U.S. since Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Regions affected include primarily Livingston Parish to the east of Baton Rouge where over 30 inches of rain occurred over a 15-hour period.
13 people have died in the flooding and an estimated 40,000 homes have suffered some extent of damage. It remains unclear how many homes are uninhabitable, but some residents began the return to their homes on Wednesday. More rain is forecast for this week.
Mr. Trump’s campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, told ABC News both Mr. Trump and Gov. Pence were “going to help people on the ground who are in need.”
Federal Emergency Management Agency administrator Craig Fugate was instructed to “utilize all resources available to assist in the response and recovery” and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson toured the flooded areas on Thursday.
Vacationing on Martha’s Vineyard, President Obama plans on visiting the area Tuesday.
Responding to a local resident who said she was pleased to see Trump in the disaster area instead of playing golf, Trump said: “Somebody is, somebody that shouldn’t be.”
[BBC] [Photo courtesy New York Post]