McCain has been taking some sharp jabs at the Bush Administration in the past couple days during his visit to the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans, the hardest hit area of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
A video report from ABC News:
Here’s a report on it from AOL News as well:
NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) – Republican U.S. presidential candidate John McCain on Thursday sharply criticized the Bush administration’s handling of Hurricane Katrina and vowed, “Never again.”
McCain, putting some distance between himself and fellow Republican President George W. Bush, said if he had been president during the 2005 catastrophe he would have immediately visited New Orleans during the initial shock aftermath of the killer storm.
“I’m just saying I would’ve landed my airplane at the nearest Air Force base and come over personally,” he said.
Two days after the hurricane made landfall in August 2005, when immediate recovery efforts were chaotic, Bush surveyed the damage during a fly-over in Air Force One while returning from a trip to the West Coast.
On Thursday, McCain went on a tour of the lower Ninth Ward, a New Orleans neighborhood still struggling to recover from Katrina 2 1/2 years after the storm struck.
“I want to assure the people of the Ninth Ward, the people of New Orleans, the people of this country: Never again, never again will a disaster of this nature be handled in the terrible and disgraceful way it was handled,” McCain said.
Later, talking to reporters on his campaign bus, McCain said “all levels of government are to blame for the catastrophe that took place.”
“I’m not specifically singling the president out … but he shares the blame, obviously,” he said.
I’m not sure who can disagree with McCain on this, there was failure at all levels of government, from local to federal and in between. He’s really trying to win points with his statement that he would have landed his “airplane at the nearest Air Force base and come over personally,” who knows.
Certainly McCain needed to do this in order to distance himself from any charges that the Bush administration was the main failure during Katrina, whether that’s true or not, McCain’s clearly trying to put forth that he would have done things differently as President.