This week was the Republican National Committee convention in Tampa. It was supposed to begin Monday, August 27. But because of an tropical storm approaching the gulf coast, they cancelled the first day. Smart move.
The storm went Hurricane and Isaac hit New Orleans on Tuesday, August 28. The Republicans began their convention, mentioning prayers for those in harms way and support for the first responders. This, of course, received criticism from movie stars and even the Yahoo News chief (who was fired actually for his remarks).
Not noticed was the behavior of the person in charge of the federal response to disasters: our President. The day the storm hit, August 28, Obama was on a three state campaign tour in Colorado, Iowa and Virgina. Now this was not official Presidential business, this was a tour to get himself a job.
The next day, August 29, he continues to campaign, hitting Virginia and hosting an on-line chat on Reddit. Again, not official Presidential business, but on a tour to get himself a job.
While Obama had declared a federal disaster in advance of the storm, he did not declare a full disaster. This has to be requested by the Governor. It is that checks and balances thing we have in place so the Federal government does not send in the Army into a state unless they ask for it. Governor Jindal did request the full declaration. And then Jindal waited. And waited.
As of Wednesday, August 29, at 3 p.m. – a day after the hurricane hit – Jindal tweeted he was still waiting for the FULL DECLARATION from the President. At 4 p.m., the President was speaking in Charlottesville, Virginia.
So to repeat: Obama had time to campaign for a job for himself but did not have time to make the full declaration for disaster relief as requested by the state governor.
A reminder too: George Bush made a federal disaster declaration before Katrina. And then HE had to wait 4 days until the Democrat Governor requested the FULL DECLARATION.