Joe Biden carrying a message of unity in Florida after Hurricane Ian
United States President Joe Biden listens as Florida Governor Ron DeSantis gives a presentation on the state's response to Hurricane Ian.
“Today is about America coming together” behind Hurricane Ian-ravaged Florida, Joe Biden, visiting the lands of the United States, said on Wednesday. Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, one of his most vocal political opponents.
You have my promise, and America's promise, that we will not let you down. We'll walk you through this process and it's going to take a long time, the 79-year-old Democrat assured Florida residents, as the governor stood camped behind him, the mine closed.
< p class="e-p">We are grateful for the work done together at various levels of the administration, Ron DeSantis, 44, told him.
Figure of the hard right , he is often announced as a 2024 presidential candidate, and therefore a potential rival of Joe Biden, who officially intends to run.
The White House, which had declared a state of emergency before Category 4 Hurricane Ian hit a week ago, among other things promised to fully fund the project for two months. ;debris removal and urgent consolidation work.
Ron DeSantis and his wife Casey DeSantis greeted Joe and Jill Biden with quick handshakes as they arrived at the fishing port of Fort Myers, one of the hardest hit communities.
The presidential couple had already flown by helicopter over the disaster areas. He strolled with his hosts, each keeping their distance somewhat, in this very devastated neighborhood.
Near there, a construction machine was finishing clearing the debris of a house knocked down by the wind, while workers were working to repair a power line.
President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden speak with residents of hurricane-affected areas in Fort Myers.
Joe Biden, true to his empathetic nature, handed out handshakes and occasionally hugged his interlocutors.
Florida is still counting its dead and assesses the extensive damage caused by one of the strongest storms in recent American history.
The official death toll was 93 on Wednesday (89 in Florida and 4 in North Carolina), but the American media count more than a hundred deaths.
In Fort Myers, the presidential visit did not appeal to everyone. Tina, owner of a bar-restaurant where running water has not been restored, told AFP of her frustration: They started clearing today because they knew he was coming.
Why doesn't he come with a plane full of generators and water tanks? Rather than just showing up for the cameras, the 50-year-old gets carried away.
Hundreds of thousands of Florida residents were still without electricity Tuesday and authorities said it would take months and $50 billion or more to rebuild.
But 51-year-old Fort Myers resident Tracey Gore was happy to see Joe Biden and Ron DeSantis join forces: That's the most important thing. It's not about politics right now, it's about human lives.
Speaking with reporters on site, the Democratic President said: We have very different political approaches, but we have worked hand in hand.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and his wife, Casey, visited areas destroyed by Hurricane Ian along with Joe Biden and his wife.
The Governor of Florida is regularly talked about with his controversial statements and decisions.
He recently airlifted migrants to Washington and a popular Democratic elite vacation spot, Martha's Vineyard. The White House had criticized a political maneuver (…) cruel.
Ron DeSantis also passed a law which prohibits teachings on gender identity and #x27;sexual orientation in public primary schools, a text that could harm young people from the LGBT+ community, according to its critics.
Also alongside Joe Biden during his visit in Florida, one of the Republican senators whom he most willingly curbs, Rick Scott, considered by the president as another representative of the extreme right.
L& #x27;A Southern state, long seen as a swing state swinging between Democrats and Republicans, now seems to lean more sharply to the right.
Florida voted Donald Trump in the 2016 election then 2020, and the polls promise Ron DeSantis an easy re-election as governor in November.