The announcement comes as a surprise just days after the vile president attacked victims and fire officials with a tweet blaming forest mismanagement for the unprecedented devastation. It also comes after he canceled a series of high-profile international trips. The visit will be Trump’s second to the Golden State since he was elected.
He will “meet with individuals impacted by the wildfires,” said House Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walters.
As the fires raged last week, Trump threatened to withhold federal funding to the state.
Trump said via Twitter that “there is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly fires in California.” He said “billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests. Remedy now, or no more Fed payments!” It was unclear what specific federal payments the president was referring to.
Trump earlier issued an emergency declaration providing federal funds to help firefighters. He also issued two tweets later in the day expressing sympathy for those affected by the fires.
Still, firefighting officials were quick to fire back.
In a statement, the California Professional Firefighters president Brian Rice said “the president’s message attacking California and threatening to withhold aid to the victims of the cataclysmic fires is Ill-informed, ill-timed and demeaning to those who are suffering as well as the men and women on the front lines.”
Rice called the president’s assertion that forest management policies are to blame for wildfires “dangerously wrong.”