President Obama heads to Louisiana, politics follows close behind

In this June 16, 2016 file photo, President Barack Obama returns a salute as he boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland. Obama is expected to tour flood-damaged areas in Louisiana and speak with survivors Tuesday. (AP file)

WASHINGTON (MEDIA GENERAL) — President Obama will tour flood-damaged property and speak with survivors on the ground in Louisiana after an estimated 60,000 homes were damaged this month.

Mr. Obama is set to speak with reporters this afternoon after touring the devastation. FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said it has released an estimated $127 million dollars to help with disaster recovery since the flooding began.

The White House was forced to defend President Obama’s decision to stay on vacation in Martha’s Vineyard instead of returning to Washington or traveling to Louisiana during the height of the disaster.

“The President is mindful of the impact that his travel has on first responders and wants to ensure that his presence does not interfere with ongoing recovery efforts,” said Josh Earnest, White House Press Secretary on Friday. The White House has not released a list of people Mr. Obama is scheduled to meet with.

Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton released a statement on Monday to respond to questions about why her campaign had not made the same trip that President Obama made Tuesday and her rival Donald Trump made last week.

“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.” said Mrs. Clinton in a prepared statement.

For the latest on where things stand in the Race for the White House, follow @markpmeredith on Twitter. 

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