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Thursday, April 24, 2008

McCain, in New Orleans, Says Katrina Response `Disgraceful'

I picked up the AP feed on this story, because I think I finally have something to say. Give the old girl a read, then we'll discuss.

by Edwin Chen

April 24 (Bloomberg) -- John McCain toured a New Orleans neighborhood still reeling from Hurricane Katrina and issued a new and scathing critique of the ``terrible and disgraceful'' failure of the Bush administration's response to the disaster.

McCain, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, said that had he been president he would have immediately visited the area after the storm hit in August 2005. While he's been critical of the administration's Katrina response before, the Arizona senator's remarks today were some of the sharpest he's used.

``Never again will a disaster of this nature be handled in this terrible and disgraceful manner,'' McCain said after a walking tour of the Lower Ninth Ward, a predominantly black neighborhood that was devastated by Katrina. ``History will judge this president,'' he said. ``This was an unacceptable scenario.'

The New Orleans stop was part of McCain's outreach to voters in economically struggling regions of the country and to black voters who historically have voted overwhelmingly for Democratic presidential candidates. He also has been seeking to show how he would be different from fellow Republican Bush, whose approval ratings are at all-time lows for a president.

McCain also blamed the spending habits of Congress, one of his signature campaign issues, for part of the devastation suffered in New Orleans.

``I would also place some of those responsibilities on the Congress, which funded pork barrel projects that were not only not needed but certainly not as important as some of the projects that were needed here,'' he said.

The hurricane is blamed for more than 1,100 deaths, most of them in New Orleans. Thousands of the city's residents were left homeless by flooding. For days, people seeking refuge at the Super Dome were largely left to their own devices there, without adequate food or water or sanitation.

``All I can say is, it will never, ever happen again,'' McCain said after his walk, accompanied by Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, a Republican.

Done? Read it? Good. Let's talk.

So McCain doesn't think Bush got the job done, eh? Well here's a little newsflash for you, McCain: you've got a little bit of power yourself. If Bush didn't get the job done, and you've got something to say about it, you had better be willing to lend a hand and fix it, as opposed to just 'touring' New Orleans.

But this is typical, isn't it? In a country that can't stand Bush anymore, even his own party calls him out, in a pathetic attempt to get more people on his side. And you know what? Good for him. He's got the political game down.

But Katrina isn't a word game. It requires action. And if you're going to go to all the effort to go down there, do a press tour, and all that crap, you had better be ready to act on those words. Cause enough people have already shown up and said, "yup, something needs to be done." We know that. Hell, America thinks the problem is already solved because it's been 3 years and we don't hear a word about it til someone needs more points from their superdelegates to win an election.

It's the same theory I apply to the news: you never hear about killer bees until it's a slow news day. So apparently McCain has nothing to say about Iraq today, so he wants to refresh everyone's memory about Katrina, while at the same time hammering home the fact that Bush dropped the ball.

Well, all I can really say is, bravo- we've got our next president. Ignorance sure is bliss, ain't it?

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