President Obama on Louisiana Visit: 'This is Not a Photo Op'

Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images
The president is focused on long-term solutions for Louisiana flood victims amid criticism on the timing of his visit.

The rebuilding process is underway in Louisiana and President Obama is pledging to do whatever he can to help.

The President touched down in Baton Rouge on Tuesday to get a first-hand look at the massive amount of damage done by the flooding, which officials have deemed the worst natural disaster in the United States since Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

"We are heartbroken by the loss of life," the POTUS said after visiting some of the 60,000 homes ravaged by the storm, which claimed a total of 13 lives. "I think anybody who can see just the streets, much less the inside of the homes here, people's lives have been upended by this flood," he continued.

During his visit, the President also took a moment to speak briefly with the press, where he addressed public and political criticisms of his decision to head to Louisiana after his recent trip to Martha's Vineyard, rather than cutting the trip short to get there sooner.

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In short, the Commander-in-chief emphasized that his priorities are centered more around ensuring that steps are taken to provide long-term aid for residents affected by the flood, as opposed to getting too caught up in quick fixes or short-term solutions. "Sometimes, once the flood waters pass, people's attention spans pass," he told reporters. "This is not a one-off, this is not a photo-op issue. This is, how do you make sure that a month from now, 3 months from now, 6 months from now, people are still getting the help that they need." The President's response to the criticism comes just days after Donald Trump's comments that "Tuesday is too late" for a visit to Louisiana.

According to CNN, White House press secretary Josh Earnest confirmed that $120 million in federal aid has been approved so far and is started to be distributed to Louisiana residents impacted by the flood.

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