Obama quick to de­fend slow re­sponse

The Myanmar Times - - World -

AF­TER a much-crit­i­cised de­lay, Pres­i­dent Barack Obama vis­ited flood­stricken Louisiana and was quick to de­fend his ad­min­is­tra­tion’s re­sponse, urg­ing cit­i­zens to pitch in and help rav­aged com­mu­ni­ties.

Mr Obama touched down in Ba­ton Rouge and toured a hard-hit and de­bris-strewn par­ish, promis­ing Louisianans they would get all the help they need.

At least 13 peo­ple have died and more than 100,000 peo­ple have reg­is­tered for gov­ern­ment emer­gency as­sis­tance as a re­sult of the flood­ing.

The Na­tional Guard has been de­ployed and the fed­eral gov­ern­ment has ap­proved more than US$120 mil­lion in as­sis­tance for tem­po­rary rent, home re­pairs and flood in­surance pay­ments.

“I am ask­ing ev­ery Amer­i­can to do what you can to help get fam­i­lies and lo­cal busi­nesses back on their feet,” Mr Obama said, di­rect­ing peo­ple to the web­site vol­un­teer­louisiana.gov and aid groups like the Red Cross.

“Th­ese are some good peo­ple down here,” he said. “They shouldn’t have to do it alone.”

Mr Obama has been lam­pooned for not cut­ting short a two-week hol­i­day on Martha’s Vine­yard to visit the Gulf Coast state.

Heavy rains be­gan on Au­gust 11 and in just a few days, 79 cen­time­tres of rain fell on some parts of the low-lay­ing state.

A few months out from Novem­ber’s elec­tion, Mr Obama’s vis­its have in­evitably be­come an­other talk­ing point on the cam­paign trail.

Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee Don­ald Trump vis­ited Louisiana last week and goaded the golf-lov­ing pres­i­dent about his ab­sence. –

Photo: AFP

Pres­i­dent Barack Obama meets res­i­dents of a flood-af­fected area in Ba­ton Rouge, Louisiana, on Au­gust 23.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Myanmar

© PressReader. All rights reserved.