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Response to Laxman (Original post)

Sat Jun 27, 2015, 12:00 PM

80. Christie's latest power failure: Another storm, another self-serving response

Last edited Sun Jun 28, 2015, 02:13 PM - Edit history (8)

Did you know that Southern New Jersey was devastated by Sandy-like storms and damage on June 23rd?

NJ.com: The threat of severe weather was known for several days across New Jersey, prompting concern from forecasters who warned the state would become a pressure cooker for dangerous conditions...

While...North Jersey residents woke up to the hum of air-conditioners and cooled homes...much of the southern half of the state awoke to stuffy, dark houses. A commuter in Morristown might check the traffic report, while another in Deptford may be wondering how to get their overturned car out of the mall parking lot.

Hundreds of thousands lost power. Massive trees were uprooted and brought down on homes and across roads. Lawn furniture was tossed like feathers, and parts of buildings were ripped apart and strewn into streets and parking lots...(D)amage to the property and power grid could rival the derecho of 2012, which devastated the southern half of the state months before Hurricane Sandy...


Well, don't feel too bad -- apparently Chris Christie didn't, either:

NJ.com: Gov. Chris Christie said (June 26) that at least 90 percent of...the several hundreds of thousands of people whose lights went dark earlier this week...during New Jersey's recent storms should have their lights on by Friday night. Christie also explained why he hasn't declared an emergency for areas of South Jersey hit hard by the weather.

"Right now what's happening is FEMA is on the ground with the Office of Emergency Management of the State Police and they are assessing the damage level. You don't need a state of emergency declaration in order to get federal funds if you need a certain threshold and if there's anything that a state of emergency declaration would do to enhance our ability to get more help more quickly, I'd be happy to do that," Christie said...

[font size="+1"]And if you're planning to announce your run for president and will be traveling heavily afterwards, the last thing you need is a federal state of emergency declaration, as it would probably interfere with your getting the kind of national headlines you want![/font]

The (June 24) news cycle made a couple things pretty clear to anyone who was paying attention: Gov. Chris Christie plans to officially announce he's running for president next week...The news day started with a local media outlet breaking news of Christie's upcoming announcement, scheduled for (June 30) at Livingston High School...Spokespeople for the governor's office and those tied to his 2016 political action committee refused to provide comment on the story. The spokespeople maintained their silence throughout the day (June 25).

Well, that's fine with me: as of June 25, Christie had something more important to worry about -- nearly half a million affected by a storm in South Jersey! Well, later that day...

NJ.com: The governor showed up to a 101.5FM's studio for his monthly "Ask the Governor" radio show. While working inside the building, Christie brushes off reporters about the day's news..."There's been absolutely no final decision made by me."

(O)nce on the air...Christie said..."I haven't made a decision. Let's everybody remain calm." (But) NJ Advance Media reported (that) the interim superintendent of the school district (where) Christie plans to make the announcement...spoke with...the governor's brother on (June 24), and (also said) an advance crew has already been to the school...Livingston school officials say they were told to be ready...for Christie to be at the high school on (June 30). "They asked us not to say anything," said...the superintendent.

The governor was asked about how he could be so adamant about not making up his mind when his brother was talking to school officials about details of an announcement when he left the New Jersey radio station..."I have absolutely no idea what the school superintendent is talking about," Christie said...


And what did he have to say about the storm and his response to it? Well, I listened to the entire June 25 Ask The Governor radio show: What should have been the lead subject wasn't mentioned for 30 minutes, and he just repeated his tale about no need to declare a state of emergency since the estimated damages automatically qualified the area for federal aid. He makes it sound like the lights went out for a couple hours in a couple of neighborhoods -- cars were overturned!!! He offered no info on shelters, no helpline numbers, not even an invitation to call the station if you were still in dire straits. Has he even toured the area?

Imagine if he'd stated on the radio show that his presidential plans (such as they are) were off the table until both the budget AND the aftermath of the storm were under control, then enthusiastically explained how he was going to get 'em done. Being able refer to the great job he'd done after hurricane Sandy would have been helpful, of course. But the point is, it would have made him sound so much more -- well, presidential!


rocktivity

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