This from the excellent David Leonhardt of the New York Times:
"The Democrats’ best bet is probably to force Trump to end this mess himself, likely through a legally questionable declaration of emergency. That declaration would be the subject of a legal fight, and it would create some political risks for Trump. He is apparently considering taking money away from disaster relief in Florida and elsewhere, which doesn’t seem like the smartest move given the state’s electoral importance."
So what sense does it make that Florida's disaster relief money should be sacrosanct because of its electoral importance, but California's money for firefighting is at risk because the Republicans have no chance of carrying the state in the general election for president? For that matter, North Dakota would be vulnerable to presidential plundering because its Republican margin is so big that the Democratic nominee won't compete there in the general anyhow.
If presidents had to be re-elected by winning the national popular vote, as Donald Trump has said he prefers, then the president could take a little money "away from" everyone, and we all could collectively decide if this were a good or bad idea. Instead, the presidential selection system isolates the citizens of each state, divides the country between the victims and those passed over, and turns presidential politics into a perverse board game where the goal is not to have the token of bad luck land on your state.
It would be easy for states to change this system. Their legislatures or, in the case of states that permit ballot measures to change the law, their voters, can appoint electors who will vote for the winner of the national popular vote. Then raiding funds needed to fight fires in California would not be politically appealing for a Republican president, or denying repair money to a southern state hit by a hurricane would not be hypothetically attractive for a Democratic president.
Small states are especially at risk with the current system, because they do not have enough electoral votes to be as important as, say, Florida. They have voters any candidate would like to win, but under the current system they can be ignored when a president decides where to spend FEMA money.