Trump Visited Rain-Drenched North Carolina and It Went About as Well as You’d Expect

“At least you got a nice boat out of the deal.”

Trump stands in front of a home that suffered damage from Hurricane Florence; in the background is a yacht that washed ashore.Evan Vucci/AP

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

After Hurricane Florence dumped 34 inches of rain on the Carolinas, swelling rivers and flooding neighborhoods and towns, President Donald Trump toured the particularly hard-hit areas in North Carolina. As of Wednesday, 37 people had been killed by the storm. The president, who is still being criticized for pelting survivors with paper towels after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico last September, has once again attracted criticism for the way he spoke with survivors of Hurricane Florence on Wednesday.

According to White House pool reports, while Trump was being briefed before his tour began, he asked an official about Lake Norman, a town near Charlotte. When the official told him it was doing just fine, Trump responded with, “I can’t tell you why, but I love that area.” One likely reason for his affection might be that there is a Trump National Golf Club located there.

Later on, while in New Bern, Trump encountered a man whose house was damaged by the storm, and whose insurance company, he said, had refused to pay for the damages. Trump was more distracted by the yacht that had washed ashore during the storm. Then, this happened:

According to reports, when the president found out the man was not the owner, Trump smiled and said, “At least you got a nice boat out of the deal.” 

More Mother Jones reporting on Climate Desk


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend