Over a month has passed since the February 3rd train derailment in East Palestine, OH. On March 2nd President Biden claimed he would visit the area “at some point.” Yet much to the dismay of its residents, President Biden has yet to step foot in their town despite that promise. Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH) visited a toxic site in East Palestine on March 13th and had some straightforward words for the President and his priorities.
“Biden himself has either been preoccupied with traveling to Ukraine or bank bailouts for Silicon Valley. It all amounts to a masterclass in government incompetence. Joe Biden has failed this test and the people of East Palestine are suffering the consequences.”
Sen. Vance isn’t alone in his condemnation either. Since Biden made his promise on March 2nd, he has had time to visit Alabama, Pennsylvania, California, and Nevada to push his stance on gun control, Social Security & Medicare, as well as “voting rights.” He even went to two Democratic National Committee (DNC) and found time to do what impacted Ohioans cannot do safely and he went home to Delaware for a bit too.
When pushed, representatives from the White House have been quick to tout the various agencies that have responded to the area but sidestep the lack of a Presidential visit entirely. On the same day, Sen. Vance visited East Palestine Biden began his day earlier than usual and announced his plans to bail out Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank. He also took time to polish his own horn (since he’s too weak to toot it) by emphasizing the “swift action” his administration took. Meanwhile, it took them 10 days to even acknowledge East Palestine.
Naturally, this choice of words only served to further rile up the people of East Palestine who see his commitment to bailing out banks instead of to the worst environmental disasters of his administration (thus far) as horrific.
DJ Yokley, a business owner in East Palestine spoke with the Daily Caller News Foundation. He described Biden’s actions as “unfortunate for the American citizens to watch a leader of the free world, and someone that was elected to a job, fail from a leadership perspective.” To him, the bank bailout only “puts perspective on the urgency that we have here in East Palestine. There was no urgency. There was no urgency for anybody to get here and represent that until [Trump] came through and drew light to our situation.”
Sen. Vance noted some horrific problems following his visit. Particularly with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and their total lack of action to protect the residents. “The EPA has completely failed to get toxic waste out of town and into the proper containment facilities, leaving residents continuously exposed to hazardous materials.”
Other residents brought up concerns about how much good a Biden visit could even do at this point. It’s already been six weeks, and the EPA has already come and failed them. What’s done is done. At this point, it’s all about preventing another accident and paying these families for having to leave their lives behind. Much of their lifelong possessions are already cooked in toxic chemicals simply from airborne contamination.
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) is ready to get things fixed and could care less about Biden. “I don’t care if he visits or not. What I care about is that the EPA’s there, that the Department of Transportation’s there, that the NTSB [National Transportation Safety Board] is there. And we’re all there pushing for this legislation and pushing Norfolk Southern.”
He continued, “I know that the administration’s engaged that way. I’m going to be there damn near every month, and I talk to people there all the time and continue to push them. A presidential visit doesn’t concern me either way, the action that we take does.”
This kind of action to fix things is coming incredibly late, and at this point, even leftists have to admit that his lack of action is 100 times worse than Trump tossing paper towels to Puerto Ricans.