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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and President Biden. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Search efforts have paused at the site of the condo collapse in Surfside due to "structural concerns about the standing structure," Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said at a press conference Thursday.

Driving the news: The halt in rescue efforts began at approximately 2 a.m. Thursday morning due to concerns that the remaining portion of the residential building could fall, per Miami-Dade fire chief Alan Cominsky.

The latest: President Biden thanked first responders who are working on rescue efforts Thursday afternoon.

  • "What you’re doing here is incredible, having to deal with the uncertainty," Biden said to a group of individuals who have been working at the site, AP reports.
  • “Until we need you, no one fully appreciates what you do. But I promise you — we know. We know," Biden said.
  • Biden, in a meeting with Levine Cava, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) and other officials at his first stop at the site of the collapsed building, told reporters: "We're letting the nation know that we can cooperate."
  • "When it's really important ... we come together. This is life and death," he added.
  • Biden also said he believed the federal government has "the power to pick up 100% of the cost" of the rescue search and cleanup, per AP.
  • President Biden is currently meeting with family members of individuals who are missing in the building, CNN reports.

What they're saying: "We're doing everything that we can to ensure that the safety of our first responders is paramount," Levine Cava said. "Engineers are continuing to monitor the structure as we’ve paused the operation."

  • "I want to stress that President Biden's visit today will have no impact on what happens at this site," Levine Cava added.
  • "You all know it, because a lot of you have been through it as well," Biden said during his meeting with Florida officials. "There’s gonna be a lot of pain and anxiety and suffering and even the need for psychological help in the days and months that follow. And so, we’re not going anywhere."

State of play: One week after Champlain Towers South collapsed, 18 people have been confirmed dead and as many as 145 people remain missing.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

Go deeper

Mike Allen, author of AM
Sep 22, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Woodward and Costa channel Biden aides in new book

George Stephanopoulos interviews Robert Costa and Bob Woodward on Monday. Screengrab: ABC

"Peril" — the instant bestseller by Bob Woodward and his Washington Post colleague Robert Costa — grabbed headlines for its Donald Trump reporting. But half the book covers President Biden, with Woodwardian channeling of top advisers' interior monologues:

In a 50-50 Senate, each Democrat was a tall pole in the tent. Everyone was needed. [Chief of staff Ron] Klain recalled that they all thought that life in the Obama White House had been hard with 58 Democratic senators. He fantasized that if Biden had 58 Democrats, as chief of staff Klain would only have to work three days a week. (p. 347-8)
1 hour ago - World

U.S. and NATO answer Putin in writing while bracing for Ukraine invasion

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. Photo: Dursun Aydemir/Anadolu Agency via Getty

The U.S. and NATO provided Russia with written proposals on Wednesday to advance a "diplomatic path forward," even as they warned that Russia could invade Ukraine within days.

Why it matters: This is a delicate diplomatic balancing act. The U.S. and NATO want to show they're serious about diplomacy but unwilling to compromise on "core principles" — all without providing Vladimir Putin with an additional pretext for escalation.

The political leanings of the Supreme Court justices

Data: Martin-Quinn scores; Chart: Axios Visuals

The Supreme Court will continue to have a solid conservative majority even with Justice Stephen Breyer's retirement.

How to read the chart: An analysis by political scientists Andrew Martin and Kevin Quinn, known as the Martin-Quinn Score, places judges on an ideological spectrum. A lower score indicates a more liberal justice, whereas a higher score indicates a more conservative justice.