The White House maintains that President Joe Biden will tour a town in Ohio where a train derailment leaked several thousand gallons of harmful chemicals, but locals are starting to question if his evasion is political.
A report shows that In East Palestine, Ohio, a 49-railcar pileup occurred when a Norfolk Southern cargo train derailed on February 3, 2023. Eleven of those cars discharged dangerous chemicals into the nearby region. The president hasn’t been to East Palestine despite his March announcement to reporters that he will visit the site in the future.
According to White House spokesman Jeremy Edwards, the president will visit when it would be most beneficial for them since he is still allegedly supervising a recovery effort to aid the locals.
Reports show East Palestine is located in Columbiana County, which supported former US President Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election with a margin of almost 70%.
Jessica Conrad expressed her feelings of insignificance since the president chose not to visit the site in contrast to his September visit to Michigan when he joined the picket line alongside striking United Auto members union members. She told the NY Times that when the president willfully disregards your neighborhood, where do you go? She said she wanted to go there—where she could feel like an American worthy of help.
Krissy Ferguson, who lives a mile from the train crash site, said she believed it was political for Biden. She believed he would have shown up if they had been a Democrat district. It bothered her.
Former President Trump went to the location in February, and unlike Biden, he brought pallets of drinking water and hygiene supplies to aid the locals.
While condemning President Joe Biden’s trip to Ukraine, citizens of East Palestine enthusiastically welcomed former President Donald Trump into the community.
Last September, the White House again affirmed that Biden would visit the site and announced an executive action to aid East Palestine. The instruction directed federal officials to test the surrounding area’s pollution every 60 days and stressed the importance of holding Norfolk Southern responsible.
Three weeks after the incident, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg met with local people to address their grievances over the inadequate disaster response. He had been criticized for failing to visit sooner. Critics pointed out that Buttigieg waited nearly two weeks after the accident before releasing a statement about it.