President Trump on Wednesday said Democrats have largely given up on the Southeast and are deliberately stalling relief efforts for farmers and other residents who were affected by Hurricane Michael in October.
“The Democrats don’t care about Georgia. They don’t care about Alabama,” Trump said during a brief appearance at an opioid abuse summit in Atlanta. “They don’t care about numerous other states.”
Georgia lawmakers have proposed a $14 billion relief package for victims of Hurricane Michael, which also devastated the Florida Panhandle in October. But efforts to put legislation forward have stalled in Washington amid infighting.
Democrats, in turn, have accused Trump of neglecting Puerto Rico, the U.S. territory that was devastated by a pair of hurricanes in late 2017, in favor of Georgia.
“Pitting Americans in Georgia against Americans in Puerto Rico is fundamentally wrong and wholly unnecessary,” said former Georgia House Minority Leader and Senate candidate Stacey Abrams. “Georgia families and farmers deserve better leadership, and they deserve real relief now.”
“It continues to be beyond me, when we have over a dozen states affected by this storm, we cannot get this done,” Kemp, a Republican, said. “Our folks in South Georgia feel like we’ve forgotten them. I can assure them we have not.”
Trump called Democrats' inability to pass disaster relief aid a “terrible thing,” but expressed confidence that “we’re going to get it done, and a lot of that money goes to farmers, and that’s what we’re doing.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.