(Image via Twitter)
President Obama paid a visit to flood-ravaged Louisiana on Tuesday following his two-week-long vacation in Martha’s Vineyard.
During a press conference in Baton Rouge, President Obama made it clear that he could care less about the optics of his delayed trip.
“This is not a photo-op issue,” he told reporters.
“I need all Americans to stay focused on this,” he continued. “If you’re watching this today, make sure that you find out how you can help.”
The President later noted that he doesn’t “worry too much about politics,” especially now that he's "five months short of leaving" the White House.
“I guarantee you nobody on this block, none of those first responders, nobody gives a hoot whether you’re Democrat or Republican,” he said. “What they care about is making sure they’re getting the drywall out and the carpet out, and there’s not any mold building, and they get some contractors in here and they start rebuilding as quick as possible. That’s what they care about. That’s what I care about.”
President Obama received a great deal of the criticism for refusing to cut his vacation time short to visit Louisiana sooner.
The catastrophic flooding left at least 13 people dead and several injured.
An estimated 60,000 homes have been damaged and more than 100,000 people have registered for federal aid.
Americans wanting to get involved in recovery efforts can visit VolunteerLouisiana.gov or FEMA.gov.
Watch a clip from President Obama’s remarks below.