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TODAY   |  September 24, 2013

Biden to Colo. flood victims: ‘We’re not leaving’

Vice President Joe Biden and FEMA Director William Craig Fugate sat down with TODAY’s Al Roker to talk about their tour of the flood-ravaged areas of Colorado and how they believe residents in the area should proceed.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> biden, the vice president was in colorado to assess the flood damage left by the rains that hit the state last week.

>> that's right. i got to catch up with the vice president and fema director william fugate at buckley air force base in aurora after the tour of the flood ravaged area touched down.

>> good to see you.

>> good to see you.

>> in the fly over what did you see and how did it effect you?

>> the thing i saw was so much isolated devastation. ride up through some of the small areas and imagine 20 feet of water coming down there and ripping out entire highways. i'm sure you saw it. so the isolation is what impressed me and the people who are stuck there.

>> mr. vp, what do you see as critical need now?

>> critical need now is to get people housing. there's a lot of people that are just stranded. and a person loses their home, they have no idea what to do. you get all of these agencies you hear about. you walk into a fema -- there's 12 or 13.

>> recovery center.

>> and what you find is there's someone there to tell you what you need.

>> a lot of these folks don't have flood insurance . what happens to them?

>> the first step is register with fema. for a lot of folks we can provide renters assistants. get them a place to stay.

>> $2 billion worth of damage here. you know, facing a possibility of a government shut down, how are we going to fund this? how is it going to happen?

>> all the emergencies are funded. there's a $6 billion fund but anyone listening to this broadcast should not worry that fema is going to shut down -- there's no need for a shut down. if it were to happen it won't effect any of the recovery work going on right now.

>> congress fully funds. just because we hit the end of the calendar year there's still money in those accounts to operate. it's not tied to that.

>> sandy, moore, oklahoma, isaac, irene, now this. are we looking at the new normal.

>> we can't attribute any one thing to global warming but there are all of these weather events and seem more severe.

>> in this kind of situation, what's the best thing you can tell people at this point?

>> we're not going away. after the camera is gone, after we're not covering this anymore, take a look at where we've been before. we're not leaving. we'll do everything possible to make people whole.

>> meantime, i heard some other topics came up with the vice president including the big handshake heard around the country. the inauguration.

>> yeah, he did bring it up.

>> come on.

>> comen. come on.

>> i got so much trouble for coming over in the inauguration. i got so much heat. i walked out and i said hey.

>> the invitation is open at any time to come do the "today" show with us.

>> i may need a job.

>> you'll do great. thank you so much.

>> you tried, al.

>> i keep plugging.

>> the handshake that will never go away.

>> you heard your telling of it time and time again.

>> obviously left a big impression .