The White House has finally found someone else to blame for the train derailment. Surprise! It’s Trump and the Republicans! Biden’s press office put out a statement saying that they owe East Palestine an apology for “selling them out to rail industry lobbyists when they dismantled Obama-Biden rail safety protections.”
It’s a predictable bit of deflection but as Bonchie at Redstate.com points out at the link, it’s total garbage. The changes made under Trump had nothing to do with the Ohio disaster. They involved trains carrying Class 3 materials, not Class 2 like chloride, and it was a rule about brakes. This derailment was caused by a broken axle, not brakes. And the claims about changes in crew requirements are irrelevant because this accident wasn’t caused by crew errors. Bonchie’s conclusion:
“In short, the memo is just a pathetic, sad attempt to deflect blame from an Administration that has been in charge for the last two years, yet has enacted none of the things they claim are so important.”
But speaking of Trump…Neither President Biden nor any top members of his Administration have bothered to visit the town, until now. “Transportation Secretary” Pete Buttigieg finally arrived today, 20 days and several feeble excuses after the train derailed. He seemed to be in town to avoid questions.
However, former President Trump did visit the town on Wednesday. He personally donated a truckload of cleaning supplies and 13 pallets of drinking water.
He told a crowd, “We have told you loud and clear: You are not forgotten. We stand with you, we pray for you, and we will stay with you and your fight to help [receive] the accountability that you deserve.” He also blasted Biden for going to Ukraine and giving away $500 million in aid while Americans in Ohio are in desperate need of help. Someone asked what would have happened if he’d been President, and he replied, “FEMA would have been here a long time ago.”
Trump also visited a local McDonald’s, and unlike some politicians who pose as “friends of the common man,” he actually knew the McDonald’s menu. And he paid for lunch for all the police officers and firefighters, and everyone there at the time.
Trump also gave away something that might be considered self-promotion, but the people who got them should hang on to them as potential valuable collector’s items. He was passing out and autographing MAGA caps that they later realized said “47” on the side instead of “45,” implying that the 45th President was also going to be the 47th President. I hope someone saved one for Pete Buttigieg.