In one of the previously unseen segments in that 2007 video the mainstream media insist we had all seen, then Sen. Barack Obama channeled his inner Kanye West before a group of ministers, suggesting that race influenced that federal government’s response to Hurricane Katrina, unlike the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and Hurricane Andrew. ”Somehow the people down in New Orleans they don’t care about as much,” Obama told the crowd, criticizing the government for not waiving the Stafford Act for New Orleans as it had for the disasters in New York and Florida.
However, the federal government had waived the Stafford Act’s requirement that New Orleans contribute 10 percent toward the cost of reconstruction and cleanup efforts just 10 days before Obama delivered his speech. Not only that — Obama was among 14 senators who voted against the bill.
HR 2206, the U.S. Troop Readiness, Veterans’ Care, Katrina Recovery, and Iraq Accountability Appropriations Act of 2007, provided emergency supplemental appropriations and emergency assistance for the 2007 fiscal year. It also set the federal government’s share of assistance to Louisiana to 100% of eligible costs.
As most of the media had preemptively written off the newly released segments of the video as old news, don’t hold your breath for an updated fact-check, despite tweeters’ efforts to point reporters to the legislative record.
Despite the mainstream media’s claim that they’d covered the 2007 speech, CNN’s fact-checking on the subject was bypassed in favor of repeating Obama’s racially divisive message: “All the hurricane did was make bare what we ignore each and every day,” Obama said. “All the hurricane did was pull back the screen.” Obama’s Kanye West moment seems to have pulled back a screen as well and given us all another peek at Obama, the post-racial uniter.
Fox’s Bret Baier suggested that Obama’s “no” vote could very well be attributed to Iraq War funding which was also included in HR 2206.
Speaking of picking winners and losers, The Daily Caller, which broke the video, also reports today that President Obama himself chose not to waive a similar requirement for state and local governments in response to the tornado which destroyed much of Joplin, Mo., in May 2011.