ON SEPTEMBER 10, 1965, one day after Hurricane Betsy struck the Gulf Coast, causing widespread flooding, President Lyndon B. Johnson flew to New Orleans on Air Force One with Louisiana’s three most powerful politicians—Representative Hale Boggs and Senators Russell Long and Allen Ellender—as well as with the secretary of agriculture, the surgeon general, and the director of the Office of Emergency Planning.
“I am here because I want to see with my own eyes what the unhappy alliance of wind and water have done to this land and people,” Johnson, speaking without a microphone, told a small crowd that had gathered to meet him at the airport. “You can be sure that the Federal Government’s total resources will be tuned to Louisiana to help this state and its citizens find its way back from this tragedy.” The next day, the mayor of New Orleans received a sixteen-page telegram from the president describing his plans for aiding the city.
Almost one year since Katrina hit just 51 Senators and 92 House Reps have gone to Louisisana according to Women of the Storm…
Friday’s visit marked a significant milestone for the group “The Women of the Storm,” which has worked for months to bring members of congress to see the devastation in the New Orleans area. Bennett and McConnell were the 50th and 51st Senators to visit south Louisiana.
“We finally got over 50 percent,” said Becky Currence with “Women of the Storm.”