Brown Bites Back
“You can’t believe everything that you read in the newspapers, or everything that you see on television,”
“My biggest mistake was not recognizing by Saturday that Louisiana was dysfunctional.”
“Those are not FEMA roles. FEMA doesn’t evacuate communities. FEMA does not do law enforcement. FEMA does not do communications.”
“I guess you want me to be the superhero that is going to step in there and suddenly take everybody out of New Orleans.”
September 27, 2005
Preach On, Brother Michael!
HOUSE SELECT COMMITTEE HEARING WITH MICHAEL BROWN
Democrats Continue to Politicize Katrina with House Boycott Today!
The former director of FEMA bit back at his critics today in a congressional hearing of the House Select Committee on Capital Hill. The democrats on the committee have mostly boycotted the hearings. This is further evidence that the democrats have no desire for the truth of this catastrophe. If they would hear all of the information and then make a decision about the validity of the investigation, that would be one thing. But, the fact that they choose to boycott proves their intolerance for any facts presented that counter their made up minds that the federal government is to blame for the tragedy (even all of the 1,000 deaths!). Heaven forbid if someone would question the state or local officials for mistakes made. This may get you a left uppercut from the pretty Senator Landrieu! The democrats boycott leaves no doubt that all along their goal was to politicize rather than get to the truth of Katrina failures:
The congressional memo details Brown’s self-defense — and attacks on other officials — in managing the response to the catastrophic storm and flooding that killed more than 1,000 people in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.
Brown “acknowledged that he made mistakes,” said a second Republican staff member who attended the briefing.
The memo describes Brown’s views on missteps at every level of government in Katrina’s aftermath. Among the revelations:
—Brown said he should have sought help more quickly from the Pentagon after Katrina hit, and expressed regret “that he did not start screaming” for the military’s involvement sooner. The first substantial numbers of active-duty troops responding to the Gulf Coast were sent on Sept. 3, five days after the storm hit.
—Brown said Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco (search) and New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin (search) “sparred during the crisis and could not work together cooperatively.” He also described Blanco as “indecisive” and refusing to cede control of the Louisiana National Guard to federal authorities because “it would have undercut her image politically.”
Aides to Blanco and Nagin could not be immediately reached Monday night.
—Brown did not take any official notes during conference calls he ran with state and federal authorities and “just assumed that agencies would follow up on taskings resulting from the calls.”
—Brown said a federal takeover of emergency management responsibilities would be a “crutch” for local and state governments and could lead to future lapses in preparedness.
“I’ve overseen over 150 presidentially declared disasters. I know what I’m doing, and I think I do a pretty darn good job of it,” Brown said.
Brown in his opening statement said he had made several “specific mistakes” in dealing with the storm, and listed two.
One, he said, was not having more media briefings.
As to the other, he said: “I very strongly personally regret that I was unable to persuade Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin to sit down, get over their differences, and work together. I just couldn’t pull that off.”
Both Blanco and Nagin are Democrats.
“The people of FEMA are being tired of being beat up, and they don’t deserve it,” Brown said.
The hearing was largely boycotted by Democrats, who want an independent investigation conducted into government failures, not one run by congressional Republicans.
But Jefferson — who is not a committee member — accepted the panel’s invitation to grill Brown.
Referring to Brown’s description of his “mistakes,” Jefferson said: “I think that’s a very weak explanation of what happened, and very incomplete explanation of what happened. I don’t think that’s going to cut it, really.”
Committee Chairman Tom Davis, R-Va., cautioned against too narrowly assigning blame.
“At the end of the day, I suspect that we’ll find that government at all levels failed the people of Louisiana and Mississippi and Alabama and the Gulf Coast,” said Davis.
Davis pushed Brown on what he and the agency he led should have done to evacuate New Orleans, restore order in the city and improve communication among law enforcement agencies.
Brown said: “Those are not FEMA roles. FEMA doesn’t evacuate communities. FEMA does not do law enforcement. FEMA does not do communications.”
Thank you! It is about time the democrat media put in print somewhere that there were others besides the federal government who may be culpable for missteps in the Katrina disaster even if the words come from fall-guy Michael Brown!
As it turns out, Michael Brown is not the only casualty in this Katrina political firestorm. After, the non-stop biased coverage and pats on the back, Hurricane Katrina looks to be taking a toll on Truth and News Accuracy as much of the original coverage appears to be nothing but rumor.