20 August 2020 08:39
"Typically, in a time like that, neighbors would shake hands and hug their neighbors," Mr. Olson said, "and I think because of Covid, there was an extra level of disconnect and isolation." More help has arrived in recent days after Iowa Starting Line, an online news outlet, published an article over the weekend about the city's plight under the headline "It's Even Worse Than You Think In Cedar Rapids." Red Cross workers are helping. And on Tuesday, President Trump flew into the city for about 30 minutes on his way to Arizona for a campaign event. He spoke with local officials in an airport hangar about the devastation before returning to Air Force One. On Monday, Mr. Trump signed a disaster relief order that provided about $45 million for public utilities and buildings, but he did not approve money the state requested for individual homeowners and farmers, which local officials have said is desperately needed. "Don't forget, this has been a very loving area for me. Cedar Rapids has been fantastic," Mr. Trump said.
Mr. Trump won Iowa in 2016, although he lost Linn County, which includes the city, by about 10,500 votes. Angie Ward, who owns a local bar and grill, said she was worried that she may need to cover the bill for a tree that fell across her backyard. She said she was unimpressed with the president's brief visit. "I was upset that Trump came to the airport and didn't even leave to see the damage," said Ms. Ward, who said she had voted for Mr. Trump in 2016 but no longer supported him. Ms. Ward said she had to let go of her worries about the coronavirus to help her neighbors recover from the storm. With her restaurant currently closed, she has allowed customers into her home to charge their phones, as many in her neighborhood are still without power. Make informed decisions with the FT Keep abreast of significant corporate, financial and political developments around the world. Stay informed and spot emerging risks and opportunities with independent global reporting, expert commentary and analysis you can trust.