When the news is just terrible, even a Republican governor can see a role for the federal government

It was this short report that made it clear to me how bad the effects of the cyclone have been.

From CNN:

Christie: Jersey Shore devastation ‘unthinkable’

Superstorm Sandy left wreckage in its wake “beyond anything I thought I’d ever see,” New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said at a news conference today.

“The level of devastation at the Jersey Shore is unthinkable,” he said.

The state is “nowhere near” allowing many residents to return to that area, Christie said.

He plans to fly out today to visit one of the worst-hit areas, but there is nowhere for him to land at the Barrier Islands because of all the damage.

Also, every rail line in the state has faced major damage, he said.

Christie said he’s confident that President Barack Obama and the federal government will work with New Jersey and that the state will rebuild.

7 thoughts on “When the news is just terrible, even a Republican governor can see a role for the federal government

  1. I can still vividly remember going back on Galveston Island after Ike. Ordinary residents weren’t allowed back for a week or so. By then the trash was piled about 8 feet high along the main street. I felt I had joined a funeral procession. And this sort of destruction has details few will foresee. Benign ones: rescue workers staying in one’s apartment house for months. Odd malign ones: no elevators working in the same 28 floor apartment building

  2. Christie’s conduct has been admirable, but he surely *is* playing politics. Christie is a smart politician who knows the score: Romney has a greater than 50 percent chance of losing, and 2016 is Christie’s best chance at the White House. Responding effectively to this tragedy will help his chances. Blowing it will completely destroy his chances. Christie has little choice but to play nicely with Obama if the presidency is his goal and the federal government makes an effective response to Sandy.

    But I guess I can’t direct much scorn at Christie. Democrats play politics in the same way. Democrats who pay lip service to individual rights have little trouble voting for anti-rights legislation and praising the Department of Homeland Security when it does something that isn’t incompetent.

  3. The facts speak for themselves. No one can help comparing how this disaster will play out on Obama’s watch with the aftermath of Katrina with Bush in charge.

  4. I think we are being very mild. You could look at what the NYTimes thinks of the idea that the federal government has no role in federal relief for people who “make bad choices,” such as living on the East Coast.

  5. About Christie and politics: He must see the political advantages for himself, but at the same time, he does realize that he has to have Obama’s support right now.

    Interestingly, some of the people now helping out in NY and NJ got their knowledge of hurricane damage from the Gulf Coast and, in particular, Galveston. One of them was talking about how awful a flood with salt water is. It isn’t just that there’s flooding, and it isn’t just that the water is going to leave very stinky residue. Worst really is the corrosion that salt water brings with it, and the destruction to vegetation.

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