by michelle millhollon
and jordan blum
Capitol news bureau
September 03, 2012
President Barack Obama will visit Louisiana Monday, arriving days after his rival for the White House toured the destruction from Hurricane Isaac.
The White House announced Obama plans to meet with local officials and view the ongoing response and recovery efforts.
The details of the trip will be announced later.
Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney flew into Louisiana on Friday to tour Jean Lafitte in Jefferson Parish with Gov. Bobby Jindal.
Jindal is backing Romney and has sparred with the president for not covering storm costs to the degree that the governor wants.
The governor said Romney’s reached out to him several times during the storm. Jindal said he also extended an invitation to the White House. He said he is “thrilled” that both are coming.
“When the governor comes today and the president comes Monday, we’re not talking politics,” Jindal said.
Obama’s press secretary, Jay Carney, said the president was planning the trip to Louisiana for Monday before Romney announced he was visiting the state.
Carney said Obama opted not to visit sooner to avoid disrupting any of the relief efforts with his presence. Monday was chosen after consultation among federal, state and local officials after consideration of the “unique logistical challenges” of the president’s travel. “It was an assessment of his team and people on the ground,” Carney said.
He declined to judge whether Romney was going “too soon” and perhaps getting in the way of the response effort. “I don’t have any way to assess that,” Carney said.