President Joe Biden has still not stepped foot in East Palestine, Ohio after saying that he would visit the town horribly impacted by the toxic chemical spill “at some point.”
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On March 2, a full month after the February 3 train derailment that spilled toxic chemicals in the small town, Biden said he would go to East Palestine sometime in the future.
“As the president said, he will go to East Palestine,” a White House official told Fox News Digital Friday.
“Today he is in Rolling Fork, Mississippi, a community that has suffered immense loss: 13 lives tragically lost, homes destroyed, businesses leveled.”
“We’re committed to helping this community recover just as we’re committed to continuing to support the people of East Palestine, where federal teams at the president’s direction remain on the ground to this day to support response efforts and hold Norfolk Southern accountable.”
“The CDC has been going door to door to check in on families and has collected over 1,000 health surveys to date,” the official added.
“And the Department of Justice announced that it is suing Norfolk Southern to seek damages and hold them accountable.”
The official said within “about two hours of Norfolk Southern notifying them of the derailment, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Transportation (DOT) sprang into action and were on the scene in East Palestine.”
The official also said that with “the state in charge and the EPA leading the federal response, they quickly got to work holding the rail company accountable, containing the damage and monitoring for environmental impacts.”
“President Biden reached out to governors (Mike) DeWine and (Josh) Shapiro soon after the train derailed to offer additional federal assistance, and his team has kept members of Congress and state and local leaders updated on response efforts throughout. The president has directed his team to ensure the states have everything they need for as long as they need it.”
After a meeting on Capitol Hill on Thursday, Biden was asked by reporters whether or not he would actually visit Ohio.
“I’ve spoken with every official in Ohio, Democrat and Republican, on a continuous basis, as in Pennsylvania,” the president replied.
He said he “laid out” during his meeting with senators what he thinks “the answers are” to handling the train wreck, adding, “We will be implementing an awful lot to the legislation here.”
“And I will be out there at some point,” Biden said without saying exactly when.
Following the toxic spill, Biden did reach out to the Republican Governor Mike DeWine to offer federal assistance if needed.
“The president called me and said, ‘Anything you need.’ I have not called him back after that conversation,” DeWine told reporters in February. “We will not hesitate to do that if we’re seeing a problem or anything, but I’m not seeing it.”