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DeSantis offers to help California as Hurricane Hilary approaches

 August 20, 2023

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has pledged his support to California as the state is bracing for the unprecedented landfall of Hurricane Hilary.

In a statement issued on Saturday, DeSantis announced his readiness to extend any help necessary to California's Democratic governor, Gavin Newsom, and residents of his state, as Fox News reported.

Drawing on Florida's extensive experience in weathering tropical storms, DeSantis emphasized the need to transcend political differences in times of crisis.

DeSantis stated, "We've offered any assistance that they may need, and look, we can have our political disagreements but when you have issues like that, we've got to band together as Americans and so we may not necessarily agree with California on policy, but we understand if people need help, we want to be there to help."

Newsom's office has yet to respond to DeSantis' assistance offer.

The Threat of Hurricane Hilary

Hurricane Hilary has escalated quickly in the Pacific Ocean, developing from a tropical storm to a powerful Category 4 hurricane in under 48 hours.

Despite predictions that it will weaken upon reaching the Mexican coast, the storm's remnants will bring torrential rain to California on Sunday and Monday, causing life-threatening flooding.

California is under a tropical storm watch for the first time in its history. The warning spans from Los Angeles to the U.S.-Mexico border, encompassing the coastal region of San Diego.

Over 14 million Americans are in the path of potential devastation as the storm threatens to dump a year's worth of rain in just days.

Meteorologist Jordan Overton stressed the urgency of completing preparations immediately, saying, "The greatest impacts will not be until tomorrow night, but impacts are already ongoing."

California's Preparedness Measures

Gov. Newsom has urged California residents to prepare for flooding and power outages and to heed the advice of local authorities to ensure safety.

"California is coordinating with federal and local governments to support communities as they prepare for this unprecedented storm," Newsom said in an official news release.

The Governor's Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) has activated the State Operations Center, focusing on the incoming effects of rain, wind, and potential flash flooding.

Swift water rescue teams, California National Guard units, and flood-fighting tools are being organized. Additionally, highway maintenance crews are being staffed around the clock for proactive roadway safety.

Newsom has temporarily relocated his own operations to Southern California to oversee the preparations and response as the storm makes landfall.

A Rivalry Set Aside for Common Cause

Both Governors DeSantis and Newsom have been vocal critics of each other, a rivalry accentuated by their potential presidential aspirations.

While DeSantis is seeking the Republican nomination this year, Governor Newsom has -- at least thus far -- opted not to challenge President Biden in the 2024 Democratic primary.