President Trump is returning to Texas on Saturday to visit survivors of Hurricane Harvey as the state continues to cope with severe flooding, infrastructure damage and death.
Trump and the first lady will spend time in two key areas, Houston and Lake Charles, Louisiana, which have both been inundated by record-setting rainfall. The president made a trip to Texas last Tuesday, but chose not to visit survivors or tour damage. Now, it appears Saturday’s visit may take on a different tone.
Vice President Pence’s Thursday visit to Texas contrasted with the president’s previous approach, as Pence hugged members of the Rockport community, even rolling up his sleeves to clear away fallen trees.
“We're here today, We're going to be here tomorrow, and we’re going to be here under President Trump’s leadership every day until we rebuild and restore southeast Texas bigger and better than ever before,” Pence said, according to ABC News.
Trump vowed to personally donate $1 million of his own funds to Harvey relief efforts. However, the number pales in comparison with the cost of a trip to Mar-a-Lago, valued at an estimated $3.6 million, or the $5 million he promised to donate to charity in 2012 in exchange for President Obama’s birth certificate. He later admitted he upped the stakes, promising $50 million.
The natural disaster is the first major incident FEMA has had to face under the Trump administration, and will continue to test the agency as recovery may take years, according to an agency administrator.