Wednesday, October 03, 2012

The Rest of the Story (Natural Disaster Edition)

One day after revealing President Obama's 2007 demagogic speech at Hampton University, the Daily Caller has a rather interesting follow-up.

If you've seen Mr. Obama's remarks (in total or excerpted), you may recall him criticizing federal officials (read: the Bush Administration) for requiring state and local governments to contribute to the cost of clean-up after Hurricane Katrina, as required by the Stafford Act.

One little problem.  His claim is a bald-faced lie.  Mr. Bush waived the Stafford requirement in light of the extreme devastation caused by Katrina, and the feds footed the bill.  Never let the truth get in the way of a good narrative, as Democrats demonstrate on a daily basis.

But when Mr. Obama was sitting in the Oval Office, it was a different case entirely, as reporter Zachary Snider discovered:

Despite his harsh criticism of the George W. Bush administration’s handling of Hurricane Katrina in 2007, President Obama decided not to waive a requirement that state and local governments contribute 25 percent of relief funds devoted to cleaning up after a tornado that swept through Joplin, Mo. in May 2011.

In August of 2011, the Obama administration temporarily cut funds sent to Joplin residents in order to aid other Americans, those affected by Hurricane Irene. That decision left behind destroyed roads, leveled buildings and many homeless Missourians.
Hurricane Irene was the fifth worst Hurricane in U.S. history, causing an estimated $19 billion in damage. While Irene’s rebuilding costs were more than six times those related to Joplin, it also claimed about 100 fewer lives than the tornado.
For the record, President Obama actually visited Joplin a week after the storm, roughly the same time frame as a presidential visit to New Jersey, which was devastated by Hurricane Irene a few weeks later.  However, Mr. Obama was conspicuously absent when floods hit the Nashville, Tennessee area in May 2010, causing $1 billion in damage and killing more than 30 people.  The President did sign a disaster declaration in the aftermath of the storm, but FEMA never reported if the Stafford provision was waived for the Tennessee floods.   

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