Political Opportunism And Sandy
October 30, 2012 by Sam Rolley
As Hurricane Sandy threatened much of the United States’ Eastern seaboard, political pundits took the opportunity to shout back and forth about which Presidential candidate would cut the most funding to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
The Huffington Post dug up a Mitt Romney quote from during the Republican primary. The candidate was discussing the possibility of doing away with FEMA and making emergency management the responsibility of the States.
“Every time you have an occasion to take something from the federal government and send it back to the states, that’s the right direction. And if you can go even further, and send it back to the private sector, that’s even better. Instead of thinking, in the federal budget, what we should cut, we should ask the opposite question, what should we keep?” Romney said of the agency.
Headlines from various other news organizations ran with the theme touting things like Salon’s “Mitt’s Frankenstorm economics.” That article claimed that Romney has a vision of an America where free enterprise takes advantage of people in helpless situations as a result of privatization.
Conservative publication Breitbart swung back at the Barack Obama apologist media by pointing out that the President’s proposal for the upcoming budget sequester also calls for cuts to FEMA.
The source reports:
Obama’s proposed cuts to FEMA include the following (emphasis added):
- Flood Hazard Mapping and Risk Analysis Program – $8 million
- State and Local Emergency Programs (non-defense) – $183 million
- State and Local Emergency Programs (defense) – $5 million
- United States Fire Administration and Training – $4 million
- Salaries and Expenses (non-defense) – $75 million
- Salaries and Expenses (defense) – $7 million
- Disaster Relief – $580 million
- Emergency Food and Shelter – $10 million
- Radiological Emergency Preparedness Program – $3 million
- National Pre-disaster Mitigation Fund – $3 million