Drudge Leads Dishonest Attack On Federal Government's Response To Sandy

››› ››› CHELSEA RUDMAN, MELODY JOHNSON & EMILY ARROWOOD

The Drudge Report and Fox News have attacked the federal government and President Obama over their response to Hurricane Sandy, with Drudge suggesting that Obama is responsible for hunger in New York City. In fact, the federal government shipped 1 million meals to New York, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency and other agencies have provided other aid in the days following Sandy.

Drudge Blames Obama For Hunger In NYC ...

Drudge: "Obama Left Them Behind: Hungry Dumpster Diving In NYC." On November 1, the Drudge Report's top headline read:

[Drudge Report Archives, 11/1/12]

Drudge Link: "Staten Islanders Plead for Help: 'We Need Food'..." Drudge also linked to an ABC article with the words, "Staten Islanders Plead for Help: 'We Need Food'...":

[Drudge Report Archives, 11/1/12]

... But The Federal Government Shipped 1 Million Meals To NY

CNN: "The Federal Government Shipped One Million Meals Thursday To New York." In a November 1 article, CNN reported, "The federal government shipped one million meals Thursday to New York, where National Guard troops were distributing them to people in need, [New York Governor Andrew] Cuomo told reporters." [CNN.com, 11/1/12]

NY Daily News: FEMA And NYC Sent "Food, Water And Hundreds Of Generators" To Staten Island. According to a November 1 New York Daily News article, FEMA and the city of New York trucked food, water, and power generators into parts of Staten Island where devastation was the greatest:

Meanwhile, FEMA and the city were trucking badly needed food, water and hundreds of generators -- donated by the Caterpillar Corp. -- to the hardest hit parts of the island. Free food distribution centers were hastily prepared at two drop off points: Mill Road and New Dorp Lane, and at an empty lot at Yetman Ave. and Hylan Blvd. Food will be handed out again Friday. [NY Daily News, 11/1/12]

Fox Figures Also Attacked Obama's Response To Sandy ...

Hannity: "This Is Starting To Look Like, In My Opinion, Obama's Katrina." During his Fox program on November 1, Sean Hannity asked, "So where's President Obama? After his photo-op with Governor Chris Christie, and the help of your tax dollars, he boards Air Force One and he begins his day with a stump speech." He later said: "And with the horrifying images of Sandy's devastation now contrasted with the president's constant campaigning, this is starting to look like, in my opinion, Obama's Katrina." [Fox News, Hannity, 11/1/12]

Lou Dobbs Claims Obama's Visit To New Jersey Was A "Victory Lap." On the November 1 edition of his Fox Business show, Lou Dobbs said:

DOBBS: The victory lap that President Obama and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie took yesterday may have been far too early, especially with devastated communities in New Jersey and New York struggling to restore power to millions of people, working hard to begin recovery efforts in what in many cases -- they lack the help of essential services, dwindling supplies of gasoline, food shortages, polluted drinking water.

The image of the president and the governor slapping themselves on one another's back likely isn't appreciated by some of those millions who have yet to see any evidence of the public services they're being deprived of tonight. [Fox Business, Lou Dobbs Tonight, 11/1/12]

... But Feds Have Provided Other Aid In The Days Following Sandy...

NY Post: "FEMA Will Cover Full Cost" Of Transportation And Power Restoration In NY And NJ. In a November 1 article, the New York Post reported, "The federal government gave New York and New Jersey a financial boost in recovering from Hurricane Sandy today by agreeing to have Washington reimburse the full cost of emergency public transportation and power restoration to the region. The money from the Federal Emergency Management Agency will cover costs such repairing substations, power plants and power lines while also providing money for extra buses and driver overtime." [The New York Post, 11/1/12]

DOT Is Providing $13 Million In Quick-Release Emergency Funding To NY And RI. On October 31, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced that the DOT was making available $13 million dollars in quick-release emergency relief funds to New York and Rhode Island for infrastructure rebuilding after Sandy. The $13 million "represents 100 percent of the state-requested funds -- $10 million from New York and $3 million from Rhode Island," according to the DOT. The DOT went on to note that federal-aid highway funds will be given to additional states and that these quick release emergency relief funds were made available at Obama's direction:

"President Obama has directed us to immediately help restore vital transportation infrastructure following this unprecedented and devastating storm - and that's exactly what we're doing," said Secretary LaHood.  "These emergency relief funds are just a down payment on our commitment to all of the states impacted by Hurricane Sandy."  [U.S. Department of Transportation, 10/31/12]

... And Obama Made Disaster-Area Declarations "Unusually Early"

USA Today: Obama Declared NY And NJ Major Disaster Areas "Unusually Early" After Requests From The States' Governors.  An October 30 USA Today article reported that Obama took "unusually early action" in declaring New York and New Jersey major disaster areas, "reflecting the massive damage wrought by Hurricane Sandy." USA Today wrote that even though "[d]isaster declarations are normally made after post-storm assessments," Cuomo and Christie "requested the sped-up disaster declarations." The report further noted that disaster declarations make federal funding available to affected counties. [USA Today10/30/12]

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