Mayor Says "Leave!" but Governor Disagrees!
More than a week after Hurricane Katrina, Mayor Ray Nagin of New Orleans told everyone in New Orleans who are not helping in the relief efforts to get out of the city or they would be removed by force:
To the estimated 10,000 residents still believed to be holed up in this ruined city, the mayor had a blunt new warning: Get out now — or risk being taken out by force.
As floodwaters began to slowly recede with the city’s first pumps returning to operation, Mayor C. Ray Nagin authorized law enforcement officers and the U.S. military to force the evacuation of all residents who refuse to heed orders to leave.
U.S. military officials said, however, that U.S. troops would not participate in enforcing the evacuation order, although National Guard soldiers under command of the governor could assist in a forced evacuation.
A New Orleans man who still doesn’t want to leave his home says a group of soldiers tried to get him to leave earlier Wednesday.
Patrick McCarty refused, insisting that he’s still safe amid the floodwaters.
But the soldiers were able to persuade others to leave, including one 86-year-old man whose neighbor assured him it would “be like a vacation.”
Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco (search) seemed at odds with New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin (search ) Wednesday, hours after the mayor ordered the mandatory evacuation of the crippled Crescent City by force if necessary.
As floodwaters caused by Hurricane Katrina (search) began to slowly recede with the ruined city’s first pumps returning to operation, Nagin late Tuesday authorized law enforcement officers to force the evacuation of the estimated 10,000 residents who refuse to heed orders to leave.
But in a Wednesday interview with FOX News, Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco (search) said she had not signed off on the decision.
“The mayor certainly has ordered that but the governor, and that would be me, would have to enforce it or implement it. We are trying to determine whether there is an absolute justification for that,” she told FOX News.
“I think the most important thing driving that decision would be the possibility of disease. If indeed the disease problem is evident, is inevitable, we’ll have to move to the next stage,” she said.
My word! Do you suppose their phones are still not working? You would think they might call each other with these decisions. Do they have any advisors? This seems like a pretty important decision that they might want to pass on before they announce it!