Poll: One-fourth believe parts of New Orleans still under water

A University of New Orleans poll of Americans outside of Louisiana suggests an amazing number of people are quite ill-informed regarding New Orleans. From theHouston Chronicle

Roughly one-fourth believed parts of New Orleans remain under water;
one-third believed the tourist-oriented French Quarter was one of the
hardest-hit areas when, in fact, the Quarter was largely unharmed. The
floodwaters, too, are long gone.

There are mixed feelings toward more federal recovery aid though findings suggest a willingness to provide such and “more than half of respondents believe too little aid has been provided so far.”

The University of New Orleans poll being released Monday showed 35.2
percent of respondents “somewhat willing” to support more federal
spending for recovery, mindful that involves “expenditure of tax
dollars,” while 22.3 percent were “neither willing nor unwilling.”
Another 20.3 percent were “extremely willing;” 22.2 percent were
somewhat or extremely unwilling.

Yet, 51.7 percent believed the federal government has provided too
little aid. About a third believed the amount has been “just about


The poll suggests concerns about where the aid is going: Asked how well
they think federal or charitable funds have been spent, “based on what
you know or personally believe,” 62.2 percent answered “not very well”
or “not well at all,” compared with 37.8 percent who said “very well”
or “somewhat well.”

My first thought was Wow someone did a poll! But of course it had to come from NOLA. I have followed Katrina related polling atpollingreport.com where you’ll find a lack of ongoing national polling in the past 18 months save for that conducted at Katrina anniversary times.

It is amazing that people could think parts of NOLA are still underwater or the French Quarter was one of the hardest hit areas. Yet given the lack of coverage from most sources I guess it shouldn’t come as a shock.

Regarding aid–Those that are willing to provide more aid are probably waiting for the leadership to make it happen and those unsure need the case to be made that it should happen. It has always been the case that the President as well as other national politicians ought to use the bully pulpit to make the case because it is there to be made in terms of national responsibility and national economic self interest. Time and again in our history when the case has been made for what needed to be done and that it would beaccomplished competently, the will of the people has followed. Of course when was the last time Bush even mentioned the Gulf Coast? Anniversary time. And the Gulf Coast has been largely ignored in the presidential debates and campaign. This poll puts me in a mind to think the greater problem is a lack of will from our leaders than the American people.

5 thoughts on “Poll: One-fourth believe parts of New Orleans still under water

  1. The really telling part of this story is that those who believe parts of NOLA are still under water are not beating down the doors of volunteer agencies. Perhaps they’ll listen to Brad Pitt since their own consciences remain silent.

  2. But there’s a deeper truth in the big misconception: figuratively, NOLA is still under water.
    (On the other part: my guess is that most people, even post-K, think NOLA is the French Quarter and that’s it.)

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