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Pelosi says Trump 'insults the memory' of victims in the deadly California wildfires

Image: Nancy Pelosi
Nancy Pelosi arrives at a House Democratic Caucus meeting at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 9, 2019 in Washington, DC. Copyright Alex Wong Getty Images
Copyright Alex Wong Getty Images
By Allan Smith with NBC News Politics
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The speaker attacked after the president threatened to withhold federal funding from the Golden State.


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi hit President Donald Trump on Wednesday after he threatened to cut off federal funding to combat California wildfires, saying the president's tweet "insults the memory" of those who died or lost their homes in recent fires.

Pelosi's attack came shortly after Trump tweeted that the California fires could be avoided "with proper Forest Management."

"Billions of dollars are sent to the State of California for Forest fires that, with proper Forest Management, would never happen," he wrote. "Unless they get their act together, which is unlikely, I have ordered FEMA to send no more money. It is a disgraceful situation in lives & money!"

Though Trump has pointed at state officials as the culprits for a spate of devastating wildfires, 57 percent of California's 33 million acres of forest are under federal control.

When surveying damage in Paradise, California, last year, Trump said raking the forest floor could help limit the spread of wildfires in the state.

"You gotta take care of the floors. You know the floors of the forest, very important," Trump said. "I was with the President of Finland. He called it a forest nation and they spent a lot of time on raking and cleaning and doing things and they don't have any problem."

Finnish President Sauli Niinistö's said he did not remember making such remarks to Trump, adding that their conversation focused on the surveillance system the country uses to monitor its forests for fires.

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