Romney on FEMA

As we batten the hatches down here in NYC, I’m reminded of what Romneybot said he would do with FEMA.  When asked about funding for disasters, Romney was, for once, unequivocal.

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.


KING: Including disaster relief, though?

ROMNEY: We cannot — we cannot afford to do those things without jeopardizing the future for our kids.

This statement shows either a profound lack of understanding of what FEMA actually does or just a craven disregard for the facts.  Knowing Romney’s recent history, I’m going to go with the latter.  State governments are always in the driver’s seat when it comes to disasters.  What FEMA does is coordinate between state, federal, municipal governments and private entities.  FEMA is there purely for support.  So de-funding it would make disaster relief more, not less, difficult.  And no one in his or her right mind wants to see what privatized disaster relief looks like.

Of course, this being Romney, he has to try to have it both ways. Here is his updated take on the question from today:

Gov. Romney believes that states should be in charge of emergency management in  responding to storms and other natural disasters in their jurisdictions,” Romney  spokesman Ryan Williams said in a statement. “As the first responders, states are in the best position to aid affected individuals and communities, and to  direct resources and assistance to where they are needed most. This includes help from the federal government and FEMA.

All of a sudden, he’s like why would anyone think I’d want to de-fund FEMA.  Apparently he just wants the states to be in charge (as they always were) and the federal government to pitch in where necessary (like they always have).  Here’s the William Fugate, director of FEMA, totally getting in the way of local governments in their disaster response.

As conditions worsen along the Mid-Atlantic and other parts of the East Coast, residents need to listen to the direction of local officials.

Damn federals trying to impose their will on everyone!

Nothing like any day of the week to make the man completely change a previously held position and then try and make it seem as if there’s never been a change. It’s like watching Guy Pearce in Memento.  Every day he gets up and has no idea what has come before.

Categories: Politics Fix

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