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Bush Visits Flood-Ravaged Central US


President George Bush is in the flood-ravaged central U.S., where he is hearing the latest on the devastation and touring two of Iowa's flooded cities.

Mr. Bush arrived Thursday in Cedar Rapids, in the central state of Iowa, where he is being briefed by federal, state and local officials.

The president will then fly over Iowa City, where heavy rains last week sent rivers surging over their banks. During his tour of the state, he plans to talk with homeowners affected by the flooding.

Meanwhile, the swollen section of the Mississippi River continues to travel south and cause water to spill over its banks.

So far, at least two dozen levees have overflowed or been breached in the states of Iowa, Illinois, and Missouri, submerging dozens of small towns and destroying livestock and thousands of hectares of crops, including corn and wheat.

Experts fear the massive flooding will cause food prices to soar even higher and create dangerous conditions caused by the flow of chemicals and raw sewage from damaged factories and wastewater plants.

Republican presidential candidate John McCain is touring the region Thursday as well.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.


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