JunkYardBlog is doing a fine job exposing the New Orleans scandal. Buses used to take Democrats to the polls every election day sit under water today… meaning they were unused after Mayor Nagin issued his “mandatory” evacuation order last Sunday at President Bush’s urging.
Here is one section of the city with hundreds of unused buses.
And here is another.
Now the truth comes out further from, of all places, the Washington Post. Governor Blanco refused to hand over the evacuation to Federal authorities despite pleading from the Bush Administration. (Hat tip: VtheK)
Behind the scenes, a power struggle emerged, as federal officials tried to wrest authority from Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco (D). Shortly before midnight [last] Friday, the Bush administration sent her a proposed legal memorandum asking her to request a federal takeover of the evacuation of New Orleans, a source within the state’s emergency operations center said Saturday.
The administration sought unified control over all local police and state National Guard units reporting to the governor. Louisiana officials rejected the request after talks throughout the night, concerned that such a move would be comparable to a federal declaration of martial law. Some officials in the state suspected a political motive behind the request. “Quite frankly, if they’d been able to pull off taking it away from the locals, they then could have blamed everything on the locals,” said the source, who does not have the authority to speak publicly.
So the Governor and the Mayor were more concerned about who would be blamed in advance of the catastrophe rather than caring about using all resources available to save their citizens’ lives?? The ironic thing is that by refusing to allow the Feds in until Wednesday, instead of last Sunday, the truth is coming out and thousands of deaths are on the watch of Blanco and Nagin.
A senior administration official said that Bush has clear legal authority to federalize National Guard units to quell civil disturbances under the Insurrection Act and will continue to try to unify the chains of command that are split among the president, the Louisiana governor and the New Orleans mayor.
Louisiana did not reach out to a multi-state mutual aid compact for assistance until Wednesday, three state and federal officials said. As of Saturday, Blanco still had not declared a state of emergency, the senior Bush official said.
Further, as I reported before, it was President Bush… not Blanco or Nagin… who had to demand the evacuation of New Orleans on Sunday.
I’m sure that the President and FEMA assumed that New Orleans and state officials would follow their own evacuation plans, especially since they refused Federal help on Sunday. And that they would use the buses to save lives that are normally used to make sure Democrats get to the polls on time every four years.
Blanco and Nagin should be impeached.
-Bruce (GayPatriot) – firstname.lastname@example.org