Politics Put Aside in Hurricane Sandy Response
In the wake of the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy, leaders at all levels of government are putting politics aside to form the best disaster response possible for the regions effected by Sandy. President Obama, in what was just a week from election day, joined a conference call with utility executives to express the fact that turning power back on for the millions without it was a top priority Energy Secretary Stephen Chu and FEMA administrator Craig Fugate had also joined the call in an effort to find out what assistant FEMA could provide in assisting the companies in getting the power turned back on.
8 million homes across 18 states had lost power the AP reported.
The White House said, “The President also commended the dangerous and exhausting work being undertaken by the lineman and utility workers on the front lines in the field, repairing downed power lines and conducting other important tasks.”
The following day, President Obama flew to New Jersey to meet with Republican Governor Chris Christie and other state and local officials. Press Secretary Jay Carney told the media, “It is entirely appropriate for the president to visit New Jersey …and to view first hand the damage inflicted by Sandy. This is not a time for politics.”
Upon meeting with Governor Christie, he and President Obama toured damaged areas on the Jersey Shore and Long Beach Island in a helicopter. Following the tour, they spoke at a shelter, offering one another praise.
President Obama said, “I want to just let you know that your governor is working overtime to make sure that as soon as possible everybody can get back to normal. Christie returned praise adding, “I want to thank the president for coming here today. It’s really important to have the president of the United States acknowledge all the suffering that’s going on here in New Jersey and I appreciate it very much. We’re going to work together to make sure we get ourselves through this crisis and get everything back to normal. Thank you for coming, sir.”