Joe Biden has asked Congress to fund more than $30 billion in new spending on disaster aid and relief for Afghan refugees as the US president cautioned that the world was in “peril” from extreme weather events.
The request for additional federal money came on Tuesday in a blog post from Shalanda Young, the acting White House budget director. At the same time, Biden was touring areas of New York and New Jersey hit by severe flooding last week.
“We’ve got to listen to the scientists and the economists and the national security experts. They all tell us this is code red; the nation and the world are in peril,” the US president said. “They’ve been warning us the extreme weather would get more extreme over the decade, and we’re living it in real time now.”
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., called the request for disaster relief necessary to help communities recover quickly from the destruction caused by hurricanes, wildfires and flooding.
“Given the scale and scope of these natural disasters, everyone must work together to get Americans the help they desperately need,” he said in a statement. Schumer also toured storm damage from Ida in Queens, N.Y., with the president on Tuesday afternoon. Biden visited areas in New Jersey hit by Ida earlier in the day.
The money to resettle vulnerable Afghans comes as the Biden administration estimates that 65,000 will be brought to the U.S. by the end of month. An additional 30,000 would arrive over the course of the next 12 months. The United States and allies evacuated about 124,000 people last month from Kabul.
“This money is certainly critical … to make sure that we are fulfilling this bipartisan commitment to our Afghan allies and partners,” a senior administration official said Tuesday on a call with reporters.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: POST GAZETTE
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