Matt Stoller at MyDD had a post yesterday titled, Grace Time Is Over. In it he states, regarding the Democrats lack of seriousness about ending the Iraq War,–“It’s time for the blogs to stop giving them a pass.”
I think the same must be said regarding Katrina recovery.
As a starting point then, here is one Louisiana Democrat who is calling out the Dems on the lack of action…
WASHINGTON — An irate Rep. Charlie Melancon,
D-Napoleonville, blasted the congressional leader of his
party Wednesday for what he called unfulfilled promises to
deliver help to hurricane victims on the Gulf Coast.
Melancon’s criticism of House Speaker Rep. Nancy
Pelosi of California goes against the public image Democrats
have tried to project of caring more about the hurricane
recovery than Republicans do. As recently as last week,
Democratic House leaders met with Louisiana Gov. Kathleen
Blanco and renewed their commitment to the recovery.
But Melancon said the words haven’t been backed up
with action and, “I want it exposed.”
Melancon’s biting words come a day before Rep. James
Clyburn, D-S.C., the majority whip, is scheduled to
introduce legislation that would waive the 10 percent
cost-sharing requirement, which has already cost Louisiana
$400 million and is blamed for slowing some reconstruction
efforts. The request was the top item on Blanco’s wish
list when she made the rounds of Capitol Hill last week.
But, Melancon said that the leadership was “throwing
me a bone” with the bill and ignoring a dozen other
requests state leaders have been making over the past year.
Among them: exempting federal rebuilding grants from
taxation, settling a dispute with the Federal Emergency
Management Agency that has tied up $1.2 billion in hazard
mitigation money, and forgiving hundreds of millions of
dollars worth of loans to local communities whose tax bases
were decimated in the 2005 flooding.
In addition to the above requests Melancon wants a Katrina legislation committee…
Melancon also said that Pelosi promised to establish a
Katrina committee to develop legislation. It hasn’t
On Jan. 17, Melancon and Rep. Gene Taylor, D-Miss., a
fellow conservative Democrat, wrote to Pelosi asking her to
set up a Katrina committee comprising members from the Gulf
Coast with “the ability to start work on day one.”
Melancon said Pelosi told him at the House Democratic
retreat in Williamsburg, Va., two weeks ago that something
would happen soon.
The people of the Gulf Coast have waited almost a year and a half now for answers and action. Bush and the Republicans have abandoned the people of the Gulf Coast. The Democrats must not do the same. It’s time for action.