The likelihood that the RNC ends up truncating events this week is increasing as Tropical Storm Isaac builds to a category one or two hurricane scheduled to hit Tuesday night and Wednesday. Governors of Mississippi, Alabama and Lousiana have all joined Florida's Rick Scott in declaring emergencies, and evacuations have begun in the former three states.
FEMA is preparing, with the promise that there will not be a repeat of the Katrina debacle, which hit exactly seven years ago, Wednesday.
The Federal Emergency Management Administration has activated incident management teams in Florida and Louisiana to help state and local agencies respond to the damage caused by the storm.The emergency declarations are a precursor to a federal emergency declaration and requests for FEMA assistance, requests that you know these Republican governors will be making. As they should. Because that's one of the most important things government is supposed to do: provide emergency assistance when the worst happens.
Over the past few days, FEMA moved thousands of pounds of emergency supplies to distribution centers in Alabama and Florida to be closer to where the storm might make landfall.
More than 1 million liters of drinking water, 436,000 meals, 2,000 cots, 4,600 blankets and other supplies have been unloaded into warehouses in Montgomery, Ala., and Jacksonville, Fla.
And that's exactly what the Republicans don't want the federal government to be doing. The government functioning, helping people, actually working undercuts their fundamental argument that government is bad. Hence, this:
The destruction of government as a force for good in people's lives is also behind the massive cuts House Republicans have made to NOAA, the National Weather Service and FEMA that Laurence Lewis wrote about earlier. If government fails, Republicans think they win.
But don't expect the Republican governors of the states impacted to be turning down any federal assistance that's offered. They live in the real world.
The President today declared an emergency exists in the State of Louisiana and ordered federal aid to supplement state and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions resulting from Tropical Storm Isaac beginning on August 26, 2012, and continuing.
The President's action authorizes the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to coordinate all disaster relief efforts which have the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by the emergency on the local population, and to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures, authorized under Title V of the Stafford Act, to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety, and to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe in the parishes of Ascension, Assumption, Jefferson, Lafourche, Livingston, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. James, St. John, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, Terrebonne, and Washington. [...]