Biden plans to visit Florida’s Big Bend Saturday in wake of Hurricane Idalia

WASHINGTON, Md — President Biden stated that he plans to visit Florida on Saturday after Hurricane Idalia slammed the state’s Big Bend region on the Gulf Coast, CBS News reported Thursday.

Mr. Biden announced the trip while visiting FEMA headquarters to thank emergency personnel for aiding the responses to the Maui wildfires and Hurricane Idalia. He did not give additional details about the trip.

During the White House press briefing, Homeland Security adviser Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall said that Mr. Biden will visit the areas most impacted by the hurricane.

The president spoke with Gov. Ron DeSantis on Wednesday and Thursday of this week to discuss federal assistance tied to Hurricane Idalia, the White House said.

When asked whether Mr. Biden would be meeting with DeSantis while there, Sherwood-Randall said the visit is still being planned, but noted the two previously met when the president traveled there in the aftermath of previous disasters.


She stated that the two are “very collegial” when they have work to do involving Americans in need.

Mr. Biden also called on Congress to replenish FEMA’s disaster fund, which could dry up within weeks and delay the federal response to natural disasters.

“We can’t wait,” President Biden said.

Days before Hurricane Idalia landed in Florida, FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell told “Face the Nation” that the emergency funds could be depleted by the middle of September, delaying recovery projects.

[DOWNLOAD: Free Action News Jax app for alerts as news breaks]

Idalia made landfall Wednesday morning on Florida’s Gulf Coast as a powerful Category 3 hurricane, bringing strong winds, heavy rain, and flooding.

President Biden also traveled to Hawaii recently to survey the damage and meet with victims of the Maui wildfires.

“It’s just pure devastation,” he said Thursday. “That whole part of the island is just leveled. There’s nothing left.”

[SIGN UP: Action News Jax Daily Headlines Newsletter]

Click here to download the free Action News Jax news and weather apps, click here to download the Action News Jax Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Action News Jax live.

Comments on this article