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Quotes - Hurricane Dubya
(Disaster strikes, and then strikes again...)
I've thought long and hard about Katrina — you know, could I have done something differently, like land Air Force One either in New Orleans or Baton Rouge. The problem with that and — is that law enforcement would have been pulled away from the mission. And then your questions, I suspect, would have been, how could you possibly have flown Air Force One into Baton Rouge, and police officers that were needed to expedite traffic out of New Orleans were taken off the task to look after you?
Hmm... I'm pretty sure that the complete lack of coordination and apparent lack of urgency within the government that Dubya headed was where people were focusing their attention regarding Katrina, not whether Dubya landed Air Force One when he flew over the disaster zone three days after Katrina hit. I could be wrong, though. White House, Jan. 12, 2009
And finally, the people in Louisiana must know that all across our country there's a lot of prayer — prayer for those whose lives have been turned upside down. And I'm one of them.
I'm confused... Is Dubya one of the prayers? Or is he one of the people in Louisiana whose life has been turned upside down? Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Sep. 3, 2008
You know, it's interesting to come back down here to the Gulf Coast. I tried to think back about what it was like the first time I came after the storm hit. And I guess the — my most vivid recollection is the piles of rubble, literally debris stacked upon debris. It was — it's hard to believe then that I would be — I had faith that I'd be able to come to a home, but I had trouble visualizing. And then I kept coming down and I watched the improvement, because of the hard work of the local citizens, people like the Mayor here and the Governor, who set a vision that was a hopeful vision. The federal government's role has been to write checks. The Governor's role and the Mayor's role is help to expedite the federal money to the local folks. And today, we are able to sit in a homeowner — the word is home. Again, one of the things I like to say is, when somebody walks in, welcome to my home. And it has a special ring to it here in the Gulf Coast, because there was a time when their home was totally destroyed.
This entire passage has a "special" ring to it... Long Beach, Mississippi, Mar. 1, 2007
You can see the reconstruction effort beginning here in this part of the world. ...And that's what we want, people to help people here in this part of the world. ...That's a smart man who understands that as this part of the world flourishes and businesses grow, people are going to find work and have the where with all to help rebuild the communities in their lives. ...We want to help that optimism succeed. And so I signed legislation that creates what's called the Gulf Opportunity Zones. That means if you invest in this part of the world, you get tax breaks. ...The remarkable things about this part of the world that was so affected by the storms was what happened to the schools. ...As a result of these efforts, in the past school year, every district closed after Katrina was reopened. It's a remarkable accomplishment by the good folks in this part of the world. ...Back in 1969, Hurricane Camille destroyed everything but the steeple and the old church bell. This time, nothing was left standing, and so the congregation had to ring the old bell from its new place in the rubble. On that first Sunday after Katrina, Father Harold Roberts read from the Book of Romans. Here's what he said. He said, "Rejoice in hope. Be patient in suffering. Persevere in prayer" — precisely what the people in this part of the world have done. ...Hands On Gulf Coast is a group of volunteers, total strangers to the people of this part of the world, in large part. ...When the Coastal Family Health Center lost three buildings and more than 60 staff members, Hands On offered to help. They worked with nurses who came from the Gulf Coast. They got FedEx to supply funding for airfare. They provided food and housing. And as a result, the Coastal Family Health Center was able to provide critical help for good people in this part of the world.
Dubya unleashes a heretofore unmatched barrage of "this part of the world", Biloxi, Mississippi, Aug. 28, 2006
One of the interesting things about Katrina, as you well know, is many of the people displaced did not own their own homes, that they were renters.
Yeah, that's... interesting... Cleveland, Ohio, Mar. 20, 2006
Were you the only black man in Salt Lake City?
To a Hurricane Katrina survivor who had survived for days on canned goods before being evacuated to Utah, New Orleans, Louisiana, Mar. 8, 2006
This year alone we've overcome higher energy prices and natural disasters, and yet we really are the envy of the world.
Yes, I'm sure the folks who fled New Orleans feel like they've overcome everything, Grand Ole Opry House, Nashville, Tennessee, Feb. 1, 2006
I also want to thank you very much for your help for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. That meant a lot to our people. It was very generous of you, Mr. President, to do just that.
Just? Gyeongju, South Korea, Nov. 17, 2005
And so while there's a shortfall because of down refining capacity, we will work with — we have instructed EPA to leave the rules in place, or to suspend the rules that were in place, keep the suspension in place, which would make it easier to increase supply, and continue to get supply of gasoline here. And that's important for our consumers to know.
If only consumers could make sense of what it is Dubya is trying to tell them... Washington, D.C., Sep. 26, 2005
See, NORTHCOM is the main entity that interfaces, that uses federal assets, federal troops to interface with local and state government. I want to watch that relationship. It's an important relationship, and I need to understand how it works better.
After 6 years as Texas (state) governor, and after more than 4 years as (federal) President, Dubya decides to do some homework, FEMA Headquarters, Washington, D.C., Sep. 23, 2005
If you want to grow something, you shouldn't tax it. If you want to encourage small business growth, we ought to incent it to grow in that part of the world. Somebody said the other day, well, that's a tax break. That region is going to have zero income anyway.
So which is it? Is "that part of the world" going to have business growth, or zero income? Also, nice use of "incent", although it seems to be basically restating "encourage" from the clause before it. Washington, D.C., Sep. 21, 2005
We'll get the debris removed, get the water up and running and get the bridges rebuilt. But what you need to do is develop a blueprint for your own future. We look forward to hearing your vision so we can more better do our job.
Dubya offers a double comparative to show he means business, and adds "hearing your vision" for good measure, Gulfport, Mississippi, Sep. 20, 2005
We want this city to re-emerge. As I said, I can't imagine America without a vibrant New Orleans. It's just a matter of timing. We're cautious about encouraging people to return at this moment of history.
Is he already working on his presidential legacy here? Washington, D.C., Sep. 19, 2005
Katrina exposed serious problems in our response capability at all levels of government. And to the extent that the federal government didn't fully do its job right, I take responsibility. I want to know what went right and what went wrong. I want to know how to better cooperate with state and local government.
If you're looking for contrition from Dubya, this is about the only inkling of it we've ever seen, White House, Sep. 13, 2005
REPORTER: Did they misinform you when you said that no one anticipated the breach of the levees?
DUBYA: No, what I was referring to is this. When that storm came by, a lot of people said we dodged a bullet. When that storm came through at first, people said, whew. There was a sense of relaxation, and that's what I was referring to. And I, myself, thought we had dodged a bullet. You know why? Because I was listening to people, probably over the airways, say, the bullet has been dodged. And that was what I was referring to. Of course, there were plans in case the levee had been breached. There was a sense of relaxation in the moment, a critical moment. And thank you for giving me a chance to clarify that.
I'm wondering if he might clarify who constituted the "lot of people", or what became of the plans for the levee breach, or perhaps just explain the "sense of relaxation"? New Orleans, Louisiana, Sep. 12, 2005
Listen, I, I, I wanna thank, uhh, leaders of the — in the faith, and uhh — faith-based and community-based community for being here, we've got people who represent thousands of volunteers who are in the midst of helping save lives.
Now, we understand people are scattered out across the country, but we have an obligation to make sure that whether a veteran's benefit or an unemployment benefit or a Social Security benefit gets to these people.
A grammatically challenged commitment to benefits is offered, White House, Sep. 6, 2005
So please give cash money to organizations that are directly involved in helping save lives — save the life who had been affected by Hurricane Katrina.
As tends to happen, he had it right the first time... White House, Sep. 6, 2005
I can't wait to join you in the joy of welcoming neighbors back into neighborhoods, and small businesses up and running, and cutting those ribbons that somebody is creating new jobs.
The sentiment is there, but coherent grammar is not... Poplarville, Mississippi, Sep. 5, 2005
The good news is — and it's hard for some to see it now — that out of this chaos is going to come a fantastic Gulf Coast, like it was before. Out of the rubbles of Trent Lott's house — he's lost his entire house — there's going to be a fantastic house. And I'm looking forward to sitting on the porch.
Dubya pep talks the residents of the hurricane-ravaged Gulf Coast as only he can, Mobile, Alabama, Sep. 2, 2005
The faith-based groups and the community-based groups throughout this part of the world, and the country for that matter, are responding.
Dubya launches into a new round of repeat offenses in reacting to Hurricane Katrina, Mobile, Alabama, Sep. 2, 2005
Here's what I believe. I believe that the great city of New Orleans will rise again and be a greater city of New Orleans. I believe the town where I used to come — from Houston, Texas, to enjoy myself, occasionally too much — will be that very same town, that it will be a better place to come to.
Dubya pledges to make New Orleans a frat boy party town once again, New Orleans, Louisiana, Sep. 2, 2005
Right now, we need to get food and clothes and medicine to the people, and we'll do so. And one of the main delivery systems will be the armies of compassion.
I think he's referring to the Salvation Army and other Christian charities, because these organizations usually get this coded treatment, Biloxi, Mississippi, Sep. 2, 2005
Brownie, you're doin' a heck of a job.
Dubya's comment to FEMA Director Michael Brown, who presided over what was arguably the worst ever performance by FEMA in an emergency situation, Mobile, Alabama, Sep. 2, 2005
Steps we're taking will help address the problem of availability, but it's not going to solve it. Americans should be prudent in their use of energy during the course of the next few weeks. Don't buy gas if you don't need it.
Dubya proposes that Americans not buy $3-$4/gallon gas just for the wallet-emptying fun of it, Washington, D.C., Sep. 1, 2005
I don't think anyone anticipated the breach of the levees.
Dubya's expert opinion on New Orleans doesn't jibe with reality, or FEMA assessments, or media accounts, or common sense, Good Morning America, Sep. 1, 2005
Well, there's a lot of food on its way. A lot of water on the way. And there's a lot of boats and choppers headed that way. Boats and choppers headed that way. It just takes a while to float 'em.
I guess we're supposed to assume that (1) he's only talking about the boats when talks about floating them, and (2) all the boats being used in the effort were in drydock, Good Morning America, Sep. 1, 2005
Thank you all very much. Thank you. I admit he's not very pretty to look at. But he's doing a heck of a job. I'm so proud of my friend — It's become clear to all the hardworking FEMA employees that I didn't pick Joe Allbaugh because of his haircut.
I'm adding this to the Hurricane Dubya category for the spooky parallel to his later praise for Allbaugh's successor at FEMA, Washington, D.C., Oct. 1, 2001
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