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Wicker and Barbour Talk Oil Spill, Obama, and the Fallout

June 21, 2010
tags: Haley Barbour, oil spill, Roger Wicker
by Brett

With the oil spill and the fallout that has resulted, Mississippi’s political leaders have been out front in the media over the past couple weeks, including this weekend when Sen. Roger Wicker delivered the GOP’s weekly address and Gov. Haley Barbour appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press. The topic was the same, but Barbour and Wicker took a different approach when talking about Barack Obama and his administration’s response.

Here is what Barbour said when asked about the president’s performance:

Well, first of all, this is an unprecedented, unforeseeable, huge disaster. So, as somebody who had to go through Katrina, I understand when you–nobody’s ever done something like this before, not everything’s going to go right. And the, and the government has made some bad mistakes, they’ve done some things wrong, but as I said earlier, they’ve done more right than wrong. But until the well’s capped, until the oil’s cleaned up, till the bills are paid, everybody in America–I mean, who could say the administration’s done a great job when the well hasn’t been capped, oil, oil hasn’t been cleaned up out of the water, and we haven’t been paid. So when the American people say, “Hey, there’s a shortcoming here,” they’re just expressing the obvious.

You can read the entire transcript here.

Wicker, obviously in a bit more of a partisan platform, offered this about the president’s response:

“From the Oval Office Tuesday night, President Obama attempted to recover from a widespread perception that he has not made this crisis a priority. The public outcry about the President’s inattention has been loud and it has been bi-partisan. I’m glad President Obama is finally putting this catastrophe at the top of his agenda, but his response has been too slow. He was slow in listening to state and local leaders, slow in getting skimmers to the Gulf, slow in understanding the seriousness of this crisis, and slow in taking ownership and responsibility for the recovery. Many of his actions have actually taken us in the wrong direction.”

“Earlier this week the President came to the Gulf Coast. After visiting with him in Mississippi, I was optimistic that he was removing politics from this disaster and focusing solely on fixing the problem. Republicans in Congress and at the state level looked forward to participating in a bipartisan, non-political solution to the many challenges this disaster has brought. Unfortunately, we were disappointed. In less than a day, we were reminded of Rahm Emanuel’s theory of never letting a good crisis go to waste.”

You can view the entire message from Wicker below:

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