Virginia reps urge Trump to declare federal emergency ahead of Hurricane Florence

Virginia's congressional delegation on Monday called on President TrumpDonald John TrumpBusiness, ballots and battling opioids: Why the Universal Postal Union benefits the US Sanders supporters cry foul over Working Families endorsement of Warren California poll: Biden, Sanders lead Democratic field; Harris takes fifth MORE to declare a federal emergency in the commonwealth ahead of the arrival of Hurricane Florence, which is barreling toward the mid-Atlantic coast.

The lawmakers wrote to Trump after Gov. Ralph Northam (D) declared a state of emergency over the weekend and ordered those living along the state's coast to evacuate the area on Monday.

“A federal emergency declaration would ensure the full availability of federal resources to support the Commonwealth’s efforts to guarantee public safety and rapid recovery from the direct and indirect effects of Hurricane Florence," the congressional lawmakers wrote.

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Trump issued a series of tweets about the impending storm on Monday, including one that specifically mentioned Virginia. He noted that he and other members of his Cabinet have been briefed by officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Hurricane Florence developed into a Category 4 storm on Monday, and has the potential to strengthen to a Category 5 storm, according to the National Hurricane Center. 

The storm is expected to make landfall somewhere on South Carolina or North Carolina by Thursday.

— Updated at 7:27 p.m.