“Where the jazz makes you cry, the funerals make you dance, and the bayou makes you believe all kinds of things.”
President Barack Obama holds a child as he greets residents in the the Tremé neighborhood in New Orleans for the 10th anniversary since the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Tremé is one of the oldest black neighborhoods in America
President Barack Obama with Mayor Mitch Landrieu
President Barack Obama sits for lunch at Willie Mae’s restaurant with young men from My Brother’s Keeper initiative
President Barack Obama participates in a roundtable on Hurricane Katrina at the Andrew P. Sanchez Community Center in New Orleans
President Barack Obama speaks during an event to mark the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina on August 27, 2015 in New Orleans, Louisiana. President Obama spoke at the Andrew P. Sanchez & Copelin-Byrd Multi-Service Center located in the Lower 9th Ward, a largely African-American neighborhood that was one of the hardest hit by the storm
President Barack Obama listens during a tour of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, to draw attention to preparedness in advance of the annual storm season that formally begins June 1. With President Obama are National Hurricane Center Director Rick Knabb, left, and Hugh D. Cobb III, center, Chief, Tropical Analysis & Forecast Branch
It’s wonderful to have a president take time out of his busy day to answer questions honestly and not dismissively. Thanks, President Barack Obama!
Just got a hurricane preparedness briefing in Miami. Acting on climate change is critical. Got climate Qs? I'll answer at 1pm ET. #AskPOTUS
President Barack Obama passes an image of a hurricane during a tour of the National Hurricane Center
President Barack Obama speaks after receiving a briefing at the National Hurricane Center in Miami. From left are, NOAA Administrator Kathy Sullivan; Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate
Obama visiting Shrine of Our Lady of Charity in Miami to pay respects to the Cuban-American diaspora. http://t.co/lhJ11t3jzU
President Obama announces that he has accepted the resignation of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki during a press conference in the Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington
Deputy Veterans Affairs Secretary Sloan Gibson leaves the White House after being named by President Barack Obama to run the Veterans Affairs Department on an interim basis while President Obama searches for a replacement for Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki who resigned Friday.
President Barack Obama gives White House press secretary Jay Carney a hug after announcing that Carney will step down later next month, during a surprise visit to the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House. The president announced Carney’s departure in a surprise appearance at in the White House press briefing room Friday. He said principal deputy press secretary Josh Earnest will take over the job
Principal Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, share the stage and a laugh during the daily briefing at the White House
President Barack Obama, flanked by Attorney Holder Eric Holder, Education Secretary Arne Duncan,and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker; speaks about a report from “My Brother’s Keeper,” an initiative to expand opportunity for young men and boys of color
President Barack Obama attends a hurricane preparedness meeting at FEMA Headquarters in Washington, DC
10:40: Delivers remarks at Austin Straubel International Airport, Green Bay
11:45: Departs Green Bay
1:15: Arrives Las Vegas
2:10: Delivers remarks at Cheyenne Sports Complex, Las Vegas
3:25: Departs Las Vegas
5:55: Arrives Denver, Colorado
7:0: Delivers remarks at Coors Events Center, Denver
8:45: Departs Denver
1:05: Arrives Columbus, Ohio where he will stay overnight
Steve Benen: If the White House hopes to see initial unemployment claims drop just before the election, officials got their wish. The new figures from the Department of Labor – the last report before Election Day – show a move in the right direction:
Applications for U.S. unemployment benefits fell by 9,000 to a seasonally adjusted 363,000 in the week of Oct. 21-27, keeping them in a range that indicates little change in U.S. hiring patterns over the past few months. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch expected claims to fall to 365,000. Initial claims from two weeks ago were revised up to 372,000 from an original reading of 369,000, based on more complete data collected at the state level, according to the U.S. Labor Department.
Toledo Blade: In the final few days of the presidential contest, Mitt Romney evidently recognizes that his opposition to the federal rescue of General Motors and Chrysler is costing him voter support he needs in Ohio and Michigan. So the Republican nominee is conducting an exercise in deception about auto-industry issues that is remarkable even by the standards of his campaign.
…. Mr. Romney’s own words make clear he is no friend of the auto industry, on which Ohio relies for one of every eight jobs. Voters in Ohio and Michigan — and the nation — need to remember that.
NYT Editorial: When General Motors tells a presidential campaign that it is engaging in “cynical campaign politics at its worst,” that’s a pretty good signal that the campaign has crossed a red line and ought to pull back. Not Mitt Romney’s campaign. Having broadcast an outrageously deceitful ad attacking the auto bailout, the campaign ignored the howls from carmakers and came back with more.
Mr. Romney apparently plans to end his race as he began it: playing lowest-common-denominator politics, saying anything necessary to achieve power and blithely deceiving voters desperate for clarity and truth.
….. Mr. Romney is providing a grim preview of what kind of president he would be.
Greg Sargent: The chatter continues this morning about GOP Governor Chris Christie’s astonishingly effusive praise of Obama’s handling of Hurricane Sandy. After they toured the damage yesterday, Christie thanked Obama for their “great working relationship” and claimed Obama “sprung into action immediately.” The day before, Christie praised Obama’s storm response as “outstanding,” adding: “He deserves my praise, and he will get it regardless of what the calendar says.”
What’s striking about this is how directly it undermines one of the central arguments Mitt Romney is making against Obama, with only five days left until Election Day … Romney has been closing out the campaign with a series of ads claiming that he will work with Democrats to get things done in Washington and arguing that Obama utterly failed to persuade Republicans to work with him….
Now Americans are being treated to images of a Republican Governor extensively praising Obama for working with him cooperatively and displaying leadership and a propensity for quick action at a time of crisis.
… Disaster coordination is one of the most vital functions of “big government,” which is why Mitt Romney wants to eliminate it….
…. FEMA, created by President Jimmy Carter, was elevated to cabinet rank in the Bill Clinton administration, but was then demoted by President George W. Bush, who neglected it, subsumed it into the Department of Homeland Security, and placed it in the control of political hacks. The disaster of Hurricane Katrina was just waiting to happen.
The agency was put back in working order by President Obama, but ideology still blinds Republicans to its value. Many don’t like the idea of free aid for poor people, or they think people should pay for their bad decisions, which this week includes living on the East Coast.
Over the last two years, Congressional Republicans have forced a 43 percent reduction in the primary FEMA grants that pay for disaster preparedness ….
….. Those in Hurricane Sandy’s path are fortunate that, for now, [Romney’s] ideology has not replaced sound policy.
ThinkProgress: The federal government’s ability to respond to natural disasters, like Hurricane Sandy currently bearing down on the East Coast, would be significantly hindered under a Romney-Ryan administration.
At least three times, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan have publicly demanded that the federal government only disburse disaster relief funding if Congress agreed to offsetting budget cuts elsewhere. This would hold desperately-needed disaster relief funding hostage unless Congress agreed to cuts elsewhere in the budget, an extraordinarily difficult prospect even in normal circumstances.
There’s basic dishonesty and then there’s f-you dishonesty – dishonesty so blatant, so consciously abusive of facts that everyone knows, that it deserves a category of its own. Kato Keilin: dishonesty. O.J.: f-you dishonesty.
Romney’s new ad about Jeeps and Italy is f-you dishonest….
…. With Obama, we can anticipate that the unfinished business of universal health care and the re-regulation of the Wall Street casino will be finished. We can expect investments in education, infrastructure and innovation, followed by a gradual, balanced attack on deficits that includes higher taxes on the wealthiest …. We can expect the Pentagon, after winding down two wars, to bank a peace dividend ….. The fact that these objectives represent a continuation of his first term does not mean he is aiming low. These are ambitious goals.
If Romney is elected…. we can fairly expect a rollback of universal health care in favor of the rough marketplace, and at least a partial dismantling of regulations on banks, extractive industries and whatever other industries squeal about job-killing red tape. We can expect a lowering of the safety net, especially a retrenchment of Medicaid and a marketization of Medicare. His deficit plan will rely on draconian spending cuts and on the supply-side superstition that tax cuts automatically produce growth …. You can expect another Scalia or two on the Supreme Court, the defunding of Planned Parenthood and a social agenda aimed at appeasing the evangelical base….
There’s more, but you get the idea. Two agendas; compare and contrast…..
Detroit News: Chrysler Group LLC reported a net profit of $381 million for the third quarter of 2012 on Monday, up 80 percent from the $212 million profit the company reported for the same period a year ago.
It was further proof that the Auburn Hills automaker’s recovery is continuing, and should help offset the losses that its Italian parent company, Fiat SpA, is expected to announce on Tuesday.
…. Monday’s results mark the third consecutive quarter of solid profitability for the company…
…. Since emerging from bankruptcy in 2009, Chrysler has not only returned to solid profitability, but also announced investments of more than $4.5 billion in the United States and Canada, repaid its government loans in full with interest six years ahead of schedule and launched 18 new or refreshed cars and trucks.
President Obama speaks about damage done by Hurricane Irene next to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Craig Fugate in the Rose Garden of the White House, August 28
President Barack Obama meets to discuss the aftermath of Hurricane Irene with FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, John Brennan, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, and Chief of Staff Bill Daley in the Oval Office, Sunday, Aug. 28, 2011. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
President Barack Obama receives an update on Hurricane Irene in the Situation Room of the White House, August 27, 2011.
Clockwise from left, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood; Richard Reed, Special Assistant to the President for Homeland Security; Nick Shapiro, senior policy advisor to John Brennan; John Brennan, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security; and Chief of Staff BIll Daley. Onscreen are FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. Joing by phone are Vice President Joe Biden, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and Energy Secretary Steven Chu. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
The President convened a video teleconference at 10:30AM this morning in the White House Situation Room so that he could receive an update on the impact of Hurricane Irene.
Vice President Biden, Chief of Staff Daley, DHS Secretary Napolitano, Treasury Secretary Geithner, Transportation Secretary LaHood, Energy Secretary Chu, FEMA Administrator Fugate, Homeland Security Advisor Brennan and other senior White House officials participated in the call.
The President was updated on the response and recovery efforts that are currently underway in coordination with state and local officials as well as the status of critical energy and transportation infrastructure in areas that have been impacted as well as areas that continue to be impacted by this storm.
He was updated on FEMA’s support to state and local partners as important damage assessments begin in areas where the storm has passed.
The President asked Secretary Napolitano and Administrator Fugate to continue to be in touch with Governors and local leadership up and down the East Coast. The President directed that all federal efforts on response and recovery operations underway continue, and he will reconvene the team this evening.
Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Craig Fugate said Sunday that federal, state and local governments are working together better in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
“We’ve learned to really work as one team, not as separate levels of government, and to put everything together early before the storm hits,” Fugate said on ABC’s “This Week.”
“I think the big [lesson] — and this is one Congress recognized and passed the Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act – was that we shouldn’t have to wait until a state is overwhelmed to begin getting ready, that we should be able to go in before the governor’s made a request, have supplies ready, have our teams in the state and work as one team, not waiting for damages to occur and that formal request to come,” Fugate said.
Steve Benen: In general, the ability of government agencies to respond to a natural disaster only draws attention when agencies fall short. The media tends to look for “the next Katrina” to demonstrate that feckless bureaucracies and government incompetence are the new norm.
But they don’t have to be, and with an effective administration, they’re not. The New York Times has a report today on the emergency response in the Southeast …. but in this case, the governmental response is earning praise, not condemnations: see here for details on the FEMA and White House response to the disaster
….President Obama and the First Lady were also on the ground in Alabama barely 40 hours after the storm struck. One local resident, who house was obliterated by a tornado, told the NYT, “It ain’t like Katrina. We’re getting help.”
What’s more, Kevin Drum notes some larger context: “Under Bush Sr., FEMA sucked. Under Clinton, FEMA was rehabilitated and turned into a superstar agency. Under Bush Jr., FEMA sucked again. Under Obama, FEMA’s doing great and responding quickly. I know, I know, we’re not supposed to politicize natural disasters. Not when that politicization makes Republicans look bad, anyway. So I’ll just let you draw your own conclusions from these four data points.”
I don’t imagine we’ll hear much about the Obama administration’s response in the Southeast; the media tends to only find these stories interesting if the government is failing instead of succeeding.
But it’s worth keeping in mind anyway. If it’s important when a federal response falls short, it’s worth appreciating what competent governance is capable of.
President Barack Obama is updated on the severe winter storm currently moving across the country during a phone call with Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate in the Oval Office, Feb. 2. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
President Barack Obama talks with FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano about the preparations for the severe winter weather impacting a large part of the country during a phone call in the Oval Office, Feb. 1. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
President Barack Obama talks on the phone with Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Craig Fugate about preparations for Hurricane Earl during a call in the Oval Office, Sept. 1, 2010. Listening at right is Richard A. Reed, Special Assistant to the President for Homeland Security. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)