It seems that one of the big outrages in Encyclopedia Drudge's "bombshell" tape of President Barack Obama's 2007 appearance before a largely black audience has to do with the Stafford Act and how it related to New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the federal floods.
The Stafford Act, in short, is a law requiring (among other things) local communities to put in roughly $1 for every $10 they get in federal aid, in most circumstances. In the tape, Obama compares the federal response in the wake of Katrina to other disasters like 9/11, and points out that the Stafford Act was waived after 9/11, when it was not waived immediately after Katrina. Pointing out this difference is using racial division and "fear," according to Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson on Fox News right now.
Well, if it is, then Sen. David Vitter is race-baiting right alongside Obama -- "whipping up race hatred," in Carlson's words. Because Vitter said the exact same thing about the Stafford Act -- one year before Obama did.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency must be restructured, and its officials should not be the lead responders in any national disaster, U.S. Sen. David Vitter, R-La., told business leaders at the Greater Slidell Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon Thursday. ...If one of the major "bombshells" in this five-year-old, easily obtainable videotape is that Obama supported waiving the Stafford Act after Katrina and the floods, just as David Vitter did, then this isn't even a wet firecracker. It's a wet sparkler, being waved frantically in the air by the Breitbart crowd.
On more pressing matters, Vitter said, he is lobbying to have as much debris removed from local areas as possible, especially in drainage canals and ditches. He is backing a measure that would exempt local authorities from having to pay a 25 percent contribution on federally sponsored emergency projects such as debris removal.
The measure would give the Agriculture Department secretary waiver authority to forego the contribution required by the Stafford Act. Vitter said he believes Congress will pass the measure: "It has a very, very good chance of success, and that should give local governments a lot more confidence and breathing room" in handling Katrina's aftermath.
And it's even more stupid and desperate than I would have imagined. Did anyone on the Right stop to think that if a truly incendiary tape had existed in 2007 that it might have actually been used during the 2008 election -- either by the Democrats in the primary or the GOP in the general?