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Michael Michigan
09-04-2005, 09:03 AM
Hurricane Preparedness Is Faulted; Fewer Blame Bush for Problems




n an event that clearly has gripped the nation -- 91 percent of Americans are paying close attention -- hopefulness far outweighs discontent about the slow-starting rescue. And as in so many politically charged issues in this country, partisanship holds great sway in views of the president's performance.

The most critical views cross jurisdictions: Two-thirds in this ABC News/Washington Post poll say the federal government should have been better prepared to deal with a storm this size, and three-quarters say state and local governments in the affected areas likewise were insufficiently prepared.

Views of Hurricane Response

Federal government adequately prepared? Yes 31% No 67%

State/local government adequately prepared? Yes 24 No 75

Blame Bush? Yes 44 No 55

Other evaluations are divided. Forty-six percent of Americans approve of Bush's handling of the crisis, while 47 percent disapprove. That compares poorly with Bush's 91 percent approval rating for his performance in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, but it's far from the broad discontent expressed by critics of the initial days of the hurricane response. (It also almost exactly matches Bush's overall job approval rating, 45 percent, in an ABC/Post poll a week ago.)

Similarly, 48 percent give a positive rating to the federal government's response overall, compared with 51 percent who rate it negatively -- another split view, not a broadly critical one.

When it gets to specifics, however, most ratings are worse: Majorities ranging from 56 to 79 percent express criticism of federal efforts at delivering food and water, evacuating displaced people, controlling looting and (especially) dealing with the price of gasoline. In just one specific area -- conducting search and rescue operations -- do most, 58 percent, give the government positive marks.

Rating the Government's Handling of...
Positive Negative
Situation overall 48% 51%
Gas prices 20 79
Looting/td> 26 71
Evacuations 38 59
Food, water needs 43 56
Search, rescue 58 39
Partisanship, as noted, plays a huge role: Nearly three-quarters of Republicans approve of the president's performance, and two-thirds rate the government's overall response positively. About seven in 10 Democrats take the opposite view on both scores.

Bush's Response to Katrina
Approve Disapprove
All 46% 47%
Democrats 17 71
Independents 44 48
Republicans 74 22

Most Americans, 55 percent, also say Bush does not deserve a significant level of personal blame for problems in the federal response to the crisis. And while 44 percent do assign him blame, only about half of them, 23 percent overall, blame him "a great deal."

Some of these views seem to take into account the magnitude of the natural disaster: Forty-four percent say the situation shows serious problems in the federal government's emergency preparedness overall, but more, 54 percent, instead say that this particular disaster was a special case. Republicans, in particular, take the latter position.

There's another division on the suggestion that the deployment of National Guard troops and equipment to Iraq made it more difficult for state officials to respond to the hurricane: Forty-six percent think this is so, and fewer, 31 percent, think it had a big impact. Forty-nine percent don't see much impact of the deployment.

There's even division on what to do with New Orleans: Forty-nine percent favor rebuilding the city with a stronger levee system; 43 percent, though, think low-lying areas of the city should be abandoned, with those homes and businesses rebuilt elsewhere. House Speaker Dennis Hastert seemed to make such a suggestion earlier this week, to broad criticism.

Emotion

Emotional responses to the rescue efforts fall short of broad outrage. Forty-five percent of Americans are angry about the federal government's response to the hurricane situation -- plenty of anger, but short of a majority. (Sixty-three percent of Democrats and 51 percent of independents express anger; among Republicans it's 27 percent.) Similarly, 44 percent call themselves "ashamed" at the federal response.

Few are proud of the response -- just 27 percent -- but the most prevalent emotion is hopefulness, expressed by 64 percent. (Fifty-five percent say they're "shocked," which could reflect a response to the magnitude of the disaster as much as the federal response.)

Feelings About the Hurricane Response
(Percent "yes" on each item)
All Democrats Independents Republicans
Hopeful 64% 50% 61% 80%
Shocked 55 68 56 42
Angry 45 63 51 27
Ashamed 44 63 46 28
Proud 27 17 21 43
Personal Link

Many people have a personal link to the disaster: Twenty-eight percent -- more than one in four Americans -- say they have close personal friends or relatives in the Gulf Coast area who were directly affected by the hurricane and flooding. Of that group, as of Friday night, about four in 10 were still waiting for word on how those friends or relatives had fared.

People who know someone affected by the hurricane are no more likely to criticize the president's or federal government's performance, and in some specifics (delivering food and water and evacuating displaced people) they rate the federal response more positively than others. Nor are those who have a friend or relative affected more apt to be angry at the federal response.

The data suggest that people still awaiting word on the status of friends or relatives are more apt to be displeased with the federal government's response and people who had already heard are more apt to be pleased, but these subgroups in this sample are too small for reliable analysis.

Gas

As noted, the federal government's worst rating -- 79 percent negative -- is for dealing with the oil supply and the rising price of gasoline -- the issue that impacts most people most personally. The rating is similar to recent views of Bush's handling of gasoline prices; in an ABC/Post poll a week ago, 73 percent disapproved.

One reason for the poor rating is the broad view that the rise in prices is unjustified: In a rare example of bipartisanship, just 16 percent of Americans think higher gas prices can be explained by the drop in oil production caused by the hurricane; 72 percent, instead, think oil companies and gas dealers are taking unfair advantage of the situation. Three-quarters of Democrats and independents think so, and in this case, so do two-thirds of Republicans.

Lower consumption is possible in the weeks ahead, but not mainly for the reason Bush suggested. He called for Americans this week to conserve the nation's fuel supply by buying gas only if they need it. Half of Americans think they'll be driving less in the weeks ahead, but the vast majority of them say it's not conservation that'll be motivating them -- but the price.

Race and Politics

Finally, this poll finds greater criticism of Bush and the federal effort among non-whites than among whites; non-whites, for example, are 23 points more likely to disapprove of Bush's performance, 21 points more apt to think the deployment of National Guard troops in Iraq hindered the hurricane response, and 13 points more likely to rate the federal response negatively. Much of this, however, looks to be associated with political affiliation; non-whites are 23 points more apt than whites to be Democrats.

Methodology

This ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted by telephone Sept. 2, 2005, among a random national sample of 501 adults. The results have a four-point error margin. Sampling, data collection and tabulation by TNS of Horsham, Pa.

Duck Dog
09-04-2005, 09:21 AM
You mean Bush really isn't raping anyone in the Superdome?

gblowfish
09-04-2005, 09:27 AM
Can't blame Bush. He was on vacation when this whole thing went down.
He wasn't even back in the office till Wednesday. Blame whoever was supposed to cover for him. Can't a man take a few days off? Sheesh!

dirk digler
09-04-2005, 09:28 AM
Can't blame Bush. He was on vacation when this whole thing went down.
He wasn't even back in the office till Wednesday. Blame whoever was supposed to cover for him. Can't a man take a few days off? Sheesh!

DAMMIT DICK CHENEY!!!! :cuss:

christinaphx
09-04-2005, 09:30 AM
i don't like bush. however, i think he's handling this Katrina situation better than anything he's ever had to handle.

no, america was not prepared. we are never prepared!! why the heck would we put 90% of our energy resources all in one spot -- that's always in a hurricane path!??

almost two years ago, phoenix & AZ in general, RAN OUT OF GAS!! america wasn't prepared because NOONE WAS MAINTAINING THE FLIPPIN' GAS PIPE LINES!?

sit back and watch or run for congress. quitchyerbitchin' !!

Duck Dog
09-04-2005, 09:35 AM
i don't like bush. however, i think he's handling this Katrina situation better than anything he's ever had to handle.

no, america was not prepared. we are never prepared!! why the heck would we put 90% of our energy resources all in one spot -- that's always in a hurricane path!??

almost two years ago, phoenix & AZ in general, RAN OUT OF GAS!! america wasn't prepared because NOONE WAS MAINTAINING THE FLIPPIN' GAS PIPE LINES!?

sit back and watch or run for congress. quitchyerbitchin' !!

Seriously, we have idiots running around in some fantasy world saying we should have flawless plans for every conceivable disaster or emergency. If the moon fell to earth tomorrow, these idiots would blame the WH for it.

Taco John
09-04-2005, 09:37 AM
I have no idea how anyone could blame Bush for the actual storm.

Ugly Duck
09-04-2005, 10:30 AM
i think he's handling this Katrina situation better than anything he's ever had to handle.He "handled" 9-11 by reading "My Pet Goat" after he was told America was under attack.

He "handled" Katrina by playing guitar on stage, and then going for a round of golf.

I think you're right about this one.....Playing golf as Americans drown probably trumps reading children's book while Americans burn. Gee.... you'd almost think that he's not really the guy in charge, eh?

Michael Michigan
09-04-2005, 10:34 AM
I have no idea how anyone could blame Bush for the actual storm.

Views of Hurricane Response.

Hoover
09-04-2005, 10:35 AM
I think a lot of the blame has to fall on state and local leaders in LA. They were the ones telling people if they are not leaving to go to the Convention Center and Superdome. Why wasn't there stock piles of food and water there and security? They just threw open the doors and called it good.

BigMeatballDave
09-04-2005, 10:36 AM
He "handled" Katrina by playing guitar on stage, and then going for a round of golf.

I think you're right about this one.....Playing golf as Americans drown probably trumps reading children's book while Americans burn. Gee.... you'd almost think that he's not really the guy in charge, eh?You're right. He should've donned scuba gear and headed into NO...
:rolleyes:

memyselfI
09-04-2005, 10:39 AM
I guess the WH could take some solace in the poll results of a poll taken 9/2 and with 501 people and less than half of them holding him accountable for the government's response.

The bad news for them is that there is still a low death toll and once it starts to climb people will further understand how the delay in reaction likely killed those people. That is why Chertoff and others in the Adminstration are all of a sudden warning about horrible things that will surface when the area is dewatered and debris is cleared.

If I was the WH, I'd be less than thrilled that the numbers of people who are willing to hold him responsible are so high so soon. Especially when people connecting the dots on how the failure of leadership has not been isolated to this particular event.

BigMeatballDave
09-04-2005, 10:41 AM
I think a lot of the blame has to fall on state and local leaders in LA. They were the ones telling people if they are not leaving to go to the Convention Center and Superdome. Why wasn't there stock piles of food and water there and security? They just threw open the doors and called it good.Exactly. I place the blame squarely on the shouldes of Local and State officials. I love the left. When it comes to the Federal gov't, though, "**** you!" "Stay outta my life!" :deevee: "Hey, help me please."

memyselfI
09-04-2005, 10:46 AM
Exactly. I place the blame squarely on the shouldes of Local and State officials. I love the left. When it comes to the Federal gov't, though, "**** you!" "Stay outta my life!" :deevee: "Hey, help me please."

Think again. The Federal Government has been mandated by law to take responsibility for national disasters.

http://www.fema.gov/about/history.shtm

From FEMA's own website:
The Federal Emergency Management Agency - a former independent agency that became part of the new Department of Homeland Security in March 2003 - is tasked with responding to, planning for, recovering from and mitigating against disasters FEMA can trace its beginnings to the Congressional Act of 1803.This act, generally considered the first piece of disaster legislation, provided assistance to a New Hampshire town following an extensive fire. In the century that followed, ad hoc legislation was passed more than 100 times in response to hurricanes, earthquakes, floods and other natural disasters.

By the 1930s, when the federal approach to problems became popular, the Reconstruction Finance Corporation was given authority to make disaster loans for repair and reconstruction of certain public facilities following an earthquake, and later, other types of disasters. In 1934, the Bureau of Public Roads was given authority to provide funding for highways and bridges damaged by natural disasters. The Flood Control Act, which gave the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers greater authority to implement flood control projects, was also passed. This piecemeal approach to disaster assistance was problematic and it prompted legislation that required greater cooperation between federal agencies and authorized the President to coordinate these activities.

The 1960s and early 1970s brought massive disasters requiring major federal response and recovery operations by the Federal Disaster Assistance Administration, established within the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Hurricane Carla struck in 1962, Hurricane Betsy in 1965, Hurricane Camille in 1969 and Hurricane Agnes in 1972. The Alaskan Earthquake hit in 1964 and the San Fernando Earthquake rocked Southern California in 1971. These events served to focus attention on the issue of natural disasters and brought about increased legislation. In 1968, the National Flood Insurance Act offered new flood protection to homeowners, and in 1974 the Disaster Relief Act firmly established the process of Presidential disaster declarations.

However, emergency and disaster activities were still fragmented. When hazards associated with nuclear power plants and the transportation of hazardous substances were added to natural disasters, more than 100 federal agencies were involved in some aspect of disasters, hazards and emergencies. Many parallel programs and policies existed at the state and local level, compounding the complexity of federal disaster relief efforts. The National Governor's Association sought to decrease the many agencies with whom state and local governments were forced work. They asked President Jimmy Carter to centralize federal emergency functions.

President Carter's 1979 executive order merged many of the separate disaster-related responsibilities into a new Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Among other agencies, FEMA absorbed: the Federal Insurance Administration, the National Fire Prevention and Control Administration, the National Weather Service Community Preparedness Program, the Federal Preparedness Agency of the General Services Administration and the Federal Disaster Assistance Administration activities from HUD. Civil defense responsibilities were also transferred to the new agency from the Defense Department's Defense Civil Preparedness Agency.

John Macy was named as FEMA's first director. Macy emphasized the similarities between natural hazards preparedness and the civil defense activities. FEMA began development of an Integrated Emergency Management System with an all-hazards approach that included "direction, control and warning systems which are common to the full range of emergencies from small isolated events to the ultimate emergency - war."

The new agency was faced with many unusual challenges in its first few years that emphasized how complex emergency management can be. Early disasters and emergencies included the contamination of Love Canal, the Cuban refugee crisis and the accident at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant. Later, the Loma Prieta Earthquake in 1989 and Hurricane Andrew in 1992 focused major national attention on FEMA. In 1993, President Clinton nominated James L. Witt as the new FEMA director. Witt became the first agency director with experience as a state emergency manager. He initiated sweeping reforms that streamlined disaster relief and recovery operations, insisted on a new emphasis regarding preparedness and mitigation, and focused agency employees on customer service. The end of the Cold War also allowed Witt to redirect more of FEMA's limited resources from civil defense into disaster relief, recovery and mitigation programs.

In 2001, President George W. Bush appointed Joe M. Allbaugh as the director of FEMA. Within months, the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11th focused the agency on issues of national preparedness and homeland security, and tested the agency in unprecedented ways. The agency coordinated its activities with the newly formed Office of Homeland Security, and FEMA's Office of National Preparedness was given responsibility for helping to ensure that the nation's first responders were trained and equipped to deal with weapons of mass destruction.

Billions of dollars of new funding were directed to FEMA to help communities face the threat of terrorism. Just a few years past its 20th anniversary, FEMA was actively directing its "all-hazards" approach to disasters toward homeland security issues. In March 2003, FEMA joined 22 other federal agencies, programs and offices in becoming the Department of Homeland Security. The new department, headed by Secretary Tom Ridge, brought a coordinated approach to national security from emergencies and disasters - both natural and man-made. Today, FEMA is one of four major branches of DHS. About 2,500 full-time employees in the Emergency Preparedness and Response Directorate are supplemented by more than 5,000 stand-by disaster reservists.

As it has for more than 20 years, FEMA's mission remains: to lead America to prepare for, prevent, respond to and recover from disasters with a vision of "A Nation Prepared." At no time in its history has this vision been more important to the country than in the aftermath of Sept. 11th.

Michael Michigan
09-04-2005, 10:50 AM
If I was the WH, I'd be less than thrilled that the numbers of people who are willing to hold him responsible are so high so soon. Especially when people connecting the dots on how the failure of leadership has not been isolated to this particular event.

44% blame Bush for everything.

That's all you have here.

Trying to capitalize politically on the death and destruction of a natural disaster is not only callous, but a bit of a risk.

Dems will be lucky if it doesn't turn on them.

Mr. Laz
09-04-2005, 10:54 AM
if the moon fell to earth tomorrow, these idiots would blame the WH for it.
and some idiots wouldn't blame the whitehouse even if Bush himself took a dump in their morning bowl of cherios.

memyselfI
09-04-2005, 10:54 AM
44% blame Bush for everything.

That's all you have here.

Trying to capitalize politically on the death and destruction of a natural disaster is not only callous, but a bit of a risk.

Dems will be lucky if it doesn't turn on them.

Sure, if it were only the 'Dems' but there have been Republicans who've criticized him as well.

Mr. Laz
09-04-2005, 10:55 AM
44% blame Bush for everything

and 55% excuse Bush for everything

memyselfI
09-04-2005, 10:58 AM
and 55% excuse Bush for everything

It's early. Those numbers will change.

BigMeatballDave
09-04-2005, 10:59 AM
Millions of years from now, Bush will be blamed when the Sun goes supernova...

Mr. Laz
09-04-2005, 11:01 AM
Millions of years from now, Bush will be blamed when the Sun goes supernova...
enters Mr. 55%
and 55% excuse Bush for everything

gblowfish
09-04-2005, 11:15 AM
Millions of years from now, Bush will be blamed when the Sun goes supernova...Probably, because in the next few years, big oil will figure out a way to establish ownership of sunshine.
:p

Michael Michigan
09-04-2005, 11:24 AM
Sure, if it were only the 'Dems' but there have been Republicans who've criticized him as well.

That will slow after this poll.

Since you fancy yourself some sort of an amateur political analyst and you're wrong so often let me give you a fact that will help you.

Most politicians read polls, and then react.

This one will stun them back into blaming Louisiana, New Orleans, FEMA and harping about gas prices.

Bwana
09-04-2005, 11:26 AM
Probably, because in the next few years, big oil will figure out a way to establish ownership of sunshine.
:p

Cool! Where can I get some of that stock?

Duck Dog
09-04-2005, 12:50 PM
and some idiots wouldn't blame the whitehouse even if Bush himself took a dump in their morning bowl of cherios.

Why would I blame the WH if Bush crapped in my breakfast bowl? I'd blame him directly, since he would be directly responsible. Unlike Katrina.

Ugly Duck
09-04-2005, 01:00 PM
Bush's Response to Katrina

Approve 46%, Disapprove 47%
Give it bit more time for the 46% that approve of Bush's response to watch more shocking footage of the suffering. The photos and videos will be shown all day long on channel after channel for weeks on end. They will be inundated by an avalanche of interviews featuring teary-eyed victims and despondent local officials. That 46% minority that approve of Bush's response will get battered down by the sheer volume of imagry they will be exposed to.

go bowe
09-04-2005, 01:09 PM
I have no idea how anyone could blame Bush for the actual storm.'cause he da debil...

CHIEF4EVER
09-04-2005, 01:25 PM
Give it bit more time for the 46% that approve of Bush's response to watch more shocking footage of the suffering. The photos and videos will be shown all day long on channel after channel for weeks on end. They will be inundated by an avalanche of interviews featuring teary-eyed victims and despondent local officials. That 46% minority that approve of Bush's response will get battered down by the sheer volume of imagry they will be exposed to.

I wouldn't bet my next paycheck on that scenario taking place. The extreme lefties would LOVE such a scenario. They love using demagoguery and the sensationalism of tragic events to make their political statements.

BigMeatballDave
09-04-2005, 01:25 PM
Probably, because in the next few years, big oil will figure out a way to establish ownership of sunshine.
:pSounds like a bright idea...

Taco John
09-04-2005, 02:11 PM
Hey Michigan,

I'm curious what your reaction to the criticism of the Bush Administration cutting the FEMA budget during his term? I've seen plenty of evidence of that, and even more criticism of FEMA by republican officials than by democrats. I'm curious to get your response to the idea that Bush may have some culpability in the slow reaction via his budget policies.

Taco John
09-04-2005, 06:26 PM
bump

Logical
09-04-2005, 06:29 PM
Forty-six percent of Americans approve of Bush's handling of the crisis, while 47 percent disapprove. Now let me check my logic meter, if more people disapprove than approve then by its vary nature Bush's perfomance is being a major amount of criticism.

Taco John
09-04-2005, 06:39 PM
Oh wow. How did I not catch that? Talk about spinning the results...

Bush's Response to Katrina
Approve Disapprove
All 46% 47%
Democrats 17 71
Independents 44 48
Republicans 74 22

In any case, I'm sincere about the question.

jettio
09-04-2005, 06:42 PM
Millions of years from now, Bush will be blamed when the Sun goes supernova...

Even more ridiculous than that, one day people are going to blame him for the fact that Iraq is a chaotic clusterf*ck 28 months after declaring an end to combat operations, and no WOMD.

There are even some nut jobs that will notice that Bin Laden is getting ready to celebrate his fourth year of B*sh's justice.

Taco John
09-05-2005, 09:13 AM
bump

Taco John
09-05-2005, 06:35 PM
bump

Bwana
09-05-2005, 06:37 PM
Grind

whoman69
09-05-2005, 07:51 PM
During his first term W was able to have blame for everything funnelled to the previous administration, or the generals, liberals, just anyone but him. Now that Republicans control all levels of the federal government there is nobody else to blame anymore, though they did try blaming the sick, poor and elderly for not getting out of town. It doesn't take five days to get food and water to a disaster area or to get a sufficient number of rescuers going unless you remember that a good deal of our logistical resourses are being tied up in Iraq.
Five years in and still everything that W is supposed to have control of is wracked in mismanagement. Yet the right still makes excuses for him. No, he is not responsible for the storm. No, he's not responsible for the floods although he did get rid of planned upgrades to the levees in order to pay for the war. Yes, he's still insisting that Iraq has something to do with the war on terror and maintains the war does not degrade our ability to respond to a crisis such as this. Yes he is responsible that there was no plan in place to be able to rescue people or get food and water to stricken areas. Yes he is responsible for putting someone in charge of FEMA whose entire resume is that he was fired from running a show horse troop. Yes he is responsible for not making sure that local and state govenments had sufficient transportation available for areas where 40% of the population falls below the poverty line and had no way to get out of the city.
So now he's going to hug a few people and make it all better. Seems the only plan in this administration is damage control.

Taco John
09-05-2005, 09:22 PM
Bump for Michael Michigan...

Logical
09-05-2005, 11:22 PM
Bump for Michael Michigan...ROFL:thumb: