President Donald Trump is receiving some backlash for not personally meeting with victims of Hurricane Harvey or visiting Houston, the hardest hit area in Texas.
He spoke to a crowd of mostly adoring supporters at a fire station in Corpus Christi, Texas, on Aug. 29, The Inquisitr reported. He also met with local and national officials, but did not personally meet with any victims of the category 4 hurricane.
The president also seized the opportunity to remark on the size of his crowd in Corpus Christi.
“What a crowd, what a turnout,” he said. He went on to say the hurricane was "historic, it's epic, but I can tell you it happened in Texas, and Texas can handle anything."
The president later praised Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Brock Long for his work and added that he “really has become very famous on television in the last couple of days.”
On Aug. 26, the day Hurricane Harvey reached Texas, the president announced that he would be pardoning controversial Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was previously found in contempt of court for refusing to obey an order for his department to stop racially profiling Hispanics.
“A lot of people think it was the right thing to do,” he said during a press conference on Aug, 29, Politico reported. “Actually, in the middle of a hurricane, even though it was a Friday evening, I assumed the ratings would be far higher than they were normally."
The president wasn't the only one who was criticized this past week. First lady Melania Trump was accused of being out of touch and insensitive for wearing five-inch stiletto heels and a designer jacket while boarding Air Force One in Washington, The New York Times reported. She changed before landing in Texas.
The Trumps also did not visit Houston, the hardest hit area. White House officials said they did not want to add more logistical problems to an area where all of the resources are focused on rescue efforts.
The president appeared to respond to his critics in a tweet.
"After reading the false reporting and even ferocious anger in some dying magazines, it makes me wonder, WHY? All I want to do is #MAGA!" Mr. Trump tweeted on Aug. 30.
During an interview with CNN on Aug. 28, Long spoke about the serious nature of Hurricane Harvey.
“FEMA is going to be [in Texas] for years,” Long told CNN, according to HuffPost. “This disaster is going to be a landmark event. ... While we’re focused on response right now and helping Texas respond, we’re already pushing forward recovery housing teams.
"We’re already pushing forward forces to be on the ground to implement the National Flood Insurance Program policies and doing the inspections that we need. We’re setting up and gearing up for the next couple years.”