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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

President Obama Signs Disaster Declarations For East Coast

One day after tropical cyclone Sandy hit the East Coast causing damage in New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, and beyond, President Obama signed important disaster declarations. The move opens the door for federal assistance to the areas hit hard by the the storm. Immediately going into action, the commander in chief canceled scheduled campaign appearances as of Monday (Oct. 29), stating that his focus was not on the election but the "impact on families." In addition to his swift response, Obama held a video-teleconference from the White House Tuesday (Oct. 30), and made plans to visit New Jersey, which is where the storm touched down, tomorrow. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo praised the POTUS for his handling of the natural disaster, which has claimed the lives of more than two dozen people in the Northeast. "Once again, I thank the President for his quick response to my request for a federal emergency declaration which will apply to the entire State of New York." said Cuomo. "We appreciate the federal government's support as we continue to prepare for Hurricane Sandy." Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey, also gave thanks to Obama. "I want to thank the president personally for his personal attention to this," he said. Given the close proximity to the election, the timing of Sandy may change its outcome. Presidential hopeful, Mitt Romney, has been involuntarily called onto the political carpet for his plan (announced last year) to cut the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Since the federal response agency is important in delivering assistance post-Sandy, when asked about his anti-FEMA stance, Romney side-stepped the question a reported 14 times. He has not yet announced plans to survey the disaster areas, but attended a “Victory Rally” in Ohio, which he renamed a “Storm Relief Event.” Before the storm hit, members of his camp also loaded supplies onto a bus to aid storm victims in Virginia.

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