Trump 'closely monitoring' Hurricane Harvey threat

Trump 'closely monitoring' Hurricane Harvey threat
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President Trump on Friday said he is "closely monitoring" the approach of an expected Category 3 hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico.

Hurricane Harvey is expected to hit the coasts of Texas and Louisiana later on Friday. Trump said he has spoken to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) and Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) and is ready to provide federal assistance "as needed." Both states declared a state of emergency earlier in the week.

"I have spoken w/ @GovAbbott of Texas and @LouisianaGov Edwards. Closely monitoring #HurricaneHarvey developments & here to assist as needed," Trump wrote shortly before noon.

Trump also tweeted a photo of a briefing on hurricane preparation and cleanup efforts from Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Brock Long, acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke, White House chief of staff John Kelly and counterterrorism adviser Thomas Bossert.

"Received a #HurricaneHarvey briefing this morning from Acting @DHSgov Secretary Elaine Duke, @FEMA_Brock@TomBossert45 and COS John Kelly," Trump added in his second tweet.

Abbott and Edwards confirmed the calls with Trump and thanked him for his support.

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"President Trump called Governor Abbott to offer federal support for the state of Texas as Hurricane Harvey approaches the Gulf Coast," Abbott's office said in a statement late Thursday.

"The president pledged all available resources from the federal government to assist in preparation, and rescue and recovery efforts. The governor thanked the president for his pledge of support and assured him that the state is working hand-in-hand with local and federal partners on all issues related to the storm."

Bel Edwards also said in a tweet that Trump had offered his "full support" to the state that was previously rocked in 2005 by Hurricane Katrina and federal mismanagement of the recovery.

"Spoke w/ @POTUS @realDonaldTrump this afternoon. He offered his full support to the people of LA as we prepare for #Harvey," Bel Edwards tweeted Thursday.

Harvey is expected to be the first Category 3 hurricane to make landfall in the United States since 2005 and the first to hit Texas since 1999.