A list of everyone who COULD have prevented this disaster

We’ve heard it already: Who’s to blame for the staggering incompetency and resulting human suffering going on right now along the Gulf Coast? I’ve heard arguments blaming the president, health Congress, viagra sale FEMA, the Army Corps of Engineers and a host of others. The fact is, they’re all to blame. In one week, our government has failed in the only jobs it was set up to do — Remember “establish justice, ensure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare and secure the blessings of liberty?” It’s a tall order, indeed, but the people in office today are there because they told us they could handle it. That’s why we elected them.

I personally know some of these people, and I even like a few of them. Still, these are the people we hired to make sure things like this don’t happen. And collectively, they all failed.

I’m not providing links so you can fire off angry letters (you can search google for such addresses), and I’m not indicating party affiliation so you can feel smug or indignant when counting Ds and Rs. And I’m not listing past representatives to whom these people might assign blame: These are the people we hired to handle this — which meant fixing past problems — because they assured us they could. These are the people that failed us.

The hurricane itself was tragic, but the inadequate government response and humanitarian nightmare that has followed is the real disaster. These problems were foreseeable, and they were certainly not excusable — and they happened on the watch of the following elected officials, who all had the power to do something before all hell broke loose:

Alabama
Gov. Bob Riley
Sen. Jeff Sessions
Sen. Richard C. Shelby
Rep. Jo Bonner
Rep. Terry Everett
Rep. Michael Rogers
Rep. Robert Aderholt
Rep. Bud Cramer
Rep. Spencer Bachus
Rep. Artur Davis

Alaska
Gov. Frank Murkowski
Sen. Lisa Murkowski
Sen. Ted Stevens
Rep. Don Young

Arizona
Gov. Janet Napolitano
Sen. Jon Kyl
Sen. John McCain
Rep. Rick Renzi
Rep. Trent Franks
Rep. John Shadegg
Rep. Ed Pastor
Rep. J. D. Hayworth
Rep. Jeff Flake
Rep. Raul Grijalva
Rep. Jim Kolbe

Arkansas
Gov. Mike Huckabee
Sen. Blanche Lincoln
Sen. Mark Pryor
Rep. Marion Berry
Rep. Vic Snyder
Rep. John Boozeman
Rep. Mike Ross

California
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger
Sen. Barbara Boxer
Sen. Dianne Feinstein
Rep. Mike Thompson
Rep. Wally Herger
Rep. Dan Lungren
Rep. John Doolittle
Rep. Robert Matsui
Rep. Lynn Woolsey
Rep. George Miller
Rep. Nancy Pelosi
Rep. Barbara Lee
Rep. Ellen Tauscher
Rep. Richard Pombo
Rep. Tom Lantos
Rep. Pete Stark
Rep. Anna Eshoo
Rep. Mike Honda
Rep. Zoe Lofgren
Rep. Sam Farr
Rep. Dennis Cardoza
Rep. George Radanovich
Rep. Jim Costa
Rep. Devin Nunes
Rep. William Thomas
Rep. Lois Capps
Rep. Elton Gallegly
Rep. Howard McKeon
Rep. David Dreier
Rep. Brad Sherman
Rep. Howard Berman
Rep. Adam Schiff
Rep. Henry Waxman
Rep. Xavier Becerra
Rep. Hilda Solis
Rep. Diane Watson
Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard
Rep. Maxine Waters
Rep. Jane Harman
Rep. Juanita Millender-McDonald
Rep. Grace Napolitano
Rep. Linda Sanchez
Rep. Ed Royce
Rep. Jerry Lewis
Rep. Gary Miller
Rep. Joe Baca
Rep. Ken Calvert
Rep. Mary Bono
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher
Rep. Loretta Sanchez
Rep. Chris Cox
Rep. Darrell Issa
Rep. Randy Cunningham
Rep. Bob Filner
Rep. Duncan Hunter
Rep. Susan Davis

Colorado
Gov. Bill Owens
Sen. Wayne Allard
Sen. Ken Salazar
Rep. Diana Degette
Rep. Mark Udall
Rep. John Salazar
Rep. Marilyn Musgrave
Rep. Joel Hefley  
Rep. Thomas Tancredo
Rep. Bob Beauprez

Connecticut
Gov. Jodi Rell
Sen. Christopher Dodd
Sen. Joseph Lieberman
Rep. John Larson
Rep. Rob Simmons
Rep. Rosa DeLauro
Rep. Christopher Shays
Rep. Nancy Johnson

Delaware
Gov. Ruth Minner
Sen. Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
Sen. Tom Carper
Rep. Michael Castle

Florida
Gov. Jeb Bush
Sen. Mel Martinez
Sen. Bill Nelson
Rep. Jeff Miller
Rep. F. Allen Boyd
Rep. Corrine Brown
Rep. Ander Crenshaw
Rep. Virginia Brown-Waite
Rep. Cliff Stearns
Rep. John Mica
Rep. Ric Keller
Rep. Michael Bilirakis
Rep. Bill Young
Rep. Jim Davis
Rep. Adam Putnam
Rep. Katherine Harris
Rep. Connie Mack
Rep. Dave Weldon
Rep. Mark Foley
Rep. Kendrick Meek
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen
Rep. Robert Wexler
Rep. Debbie Schultz
Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart
Rep. Clay Shaw
Rep. Alcee Hastings
Rep. Tom Feeney
Rep. Mario
Diaz-Balart

Georgia
Gov. Sonny Perdue
Sen. Saxby Chamblis
Sen. Johnny Isakson
Rep. Jack Kingston
Rep. Sanford Bishop
Rep. James Marshall
Rep. Cynthia McKinney
Rep. John Lewis
Rep. Thomas Price
Rep. John Linder
Rep. Lynn Westmoreland
Rep. Charles Norwood
Rep. Nathan Deal
Rep. Phil Gingrey
Rep. John Barrow
Rep. David Scott

Hawaii
Gov. Linda Lingle
Sen. Daniel K. Akaka
Sen. Daniel K. Inouye
Rep. Neil Abercrombie
Rep. Ed Case

Idaho
Gov. Dirk Kempthorne
Sen. Larry Craig
Sen. Michael Crapo
Rep. Clement “Butch” Otter
Rep. Michael Simpson

Illinois
Gov. Rod Blagojevich
Sen. Dick Durbin
Sen. Barack Obama
Rep. Bobby Rush
Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr.
Rep. Daniel Lipinski
Rep. Luis Gutirrez
Rep. Rahm Emanuel
Rep. Henry J. Hyde
Rep. Danny Davis
Rep. Melissa Bean
Rep. Janice Schakowsky
Rep. Mark Kirk
Rep. Jerry Weller
Rep. Jerry Costello
Rep. Judy Biggert
Rep. Dennis Hastert
Rep. Timothy Johnson
Rep. Donald Manzullo
Rep. Lane Evans
Rep. Ray LaHood
Rep. John Shimkus

Indiana
Gov. Mitch Daniels
Sen. Evan Bayh
Sen. Richard G. Lugar
Rep. Peter Visclosky
Rep. Chris Chocola
Rep. Mark Souder
Rep. Stephen Buyer
Rep. Dan Burton
Rep. Mike Pence
Rep. Julia Carson
Rep. John Hostetter
Rep. Michael Sodrel

Iowa
Gov. Tom Vilsack
Sen. Chuck Grassley
Sen. Tom Harkin
Rep. Jim Nussle
Rep. Jim Leach
Rep. Leonard Boswell
Rep. Tom Latham
Rep. Steve King

Kansas
Gov. Kathleen Sebelius
Sen. Sam Brownback
Sen. Pat Roberts
Rep. Jerry Moran
Rep. Jim Ryun
Rep. Dennis Moore
Rep. Todd Tiahrt

Kentucky
Gov. Ernie Fletcher
Sen. Jim Bunning
Sen. Mitch McConnell
Rep. Ed Whitfield
Rep. Ron Lewis
Rep. Anne Northup
Rep. Geoff Davis
Rep. Harold Rogers
Rep. Ernest Fletcher

Louisiana
Gov. Kathleen Blanco
Sen. Mary Landrieu
Sen. David Vitter
Rep. Bobby Jindal
Rep. William Jefferson
Rep. Billy Tauzin
Rep. Jim McCrery
Rep. Rodney Alexander
Rep. Richard Baker
Rep. Christopher John

Maine
Gov. John Baldacci
Sen. Susan Collins
Sen. Olympia J. Snowe
Rep. Tom Allen
Rep. Michael Michaud

Maryland
Gov. Robert Erlich
Sen. Barbara Mikulski
Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes
Rep. Wayne Gilchrest
Rep. C. “Dutch” Ruppersberger
Rep. Benjamin Cardin
Rep. Albert Wynn
Rep. Steny Hoyer
Rep. Roscoe Bartlett
Rep. Elijah Cummings
Rep. Christopher Van Hollen

Massachusetts
Gov. Mitt Romney
Sen. Edward M. Kennedy
Sen. John Kerry
Rep. John Olver
Rep. Richard Neal
Rep. Jim McGovern
Rep. Barney Frank
Rep. Martin Meehan  
Rep. John Tierney
Rep. Edward Markey
Rep. Michael Capuano
Rep. Stephen Lynch
Rep. William Delahunt

Michigan
Gov. Jennifer Granholm
Sen. Carl Levin
Sen. Debbie Stabenow
Rep. Bart Stupak
Rep. Peter Hoekstra
Rep. Vernon Ehlers
Rep. Dave Camp
Rep. Dale Kildee
Rep. Fred Upton
Rep. John Schwarz
Rep. Mike Rogers
Rep. Joe Knollenberg
Rep. Candice Miller
Rep. Thad McCotter
Rep. Sander Levin
Rep. Carolyn Kilpatrick
Rep. John Conyers
Rep. John Dingell

Minnesota
Gov. Tim Pawlenty
Sen. Mark Dayton
Sen. Norm Coleman
Rep. Gil Gutknecht
Rep. John Kline
Rep. Jim Ramstad
Rep. Betty McCollum
Rep. Martin Sabo
Rep. Mark Kennedy
Rep. Collin Peterson
Rep. James Oberstar

Mississippi
Gov. Ronnie Musgrove
Sen. Thad Cochran
Sen. Trent Lott
Rep. Roger Wicker
Rep. Bennie Thompson
Rep. Chip Pickering
Rep. Gene Taylor

Missouri
Gov. Matt Blunt
Sen. Kit Bond
Sen. Jim Talent
Rep. William Clay, Jr.
Rep. Todd Akin
Rep. Russ Carnahan
Rep. Ike Skelton
Rep. Emanuel Cleaver
Rep. Sam Graves
Rep. Roy Blunt
Rep. Jo Ann Emerson
Rep. Kenny Hulshof

Montana
Gov. Brian Schweitzer
Sen. Max Baucus
Sen. Conrad Burns
Rep. Dennis Rehberg

Nebraska
Gov. Dave Heineman
Sen. Chuck Hagel
Sen. Ben Nelson
Rep. Jeff Fortenberry
Rep. Lee Terry
Rep. Tom Osborne

Nevada
Gov. Kenny Guinn
Sen. John Ensign
Sen. Harry Reid
Rep. Shelley Berkley
Rep. Jim Gibbons
Rep. Jon Porter

New Hampshire
Gov. John Lynch
Sen. Judd Gregg
Sen. John Sununu
Rep. Jeb Bradley
Rep. Charlie Bass

New Jersey
Gov. Richard Codey
Sen. Jon Corzine
Sen. Frank Lautenberg
Rep. Robert Andrews
Rep. Frank LoBiondo
Rep. Jim Saxton
Rep. Christopher Smith
Rep. Scott Garrett
Rep. Frank Pallone
Rep. Mike Ferguson
Rep. William Pascrell
Rep. Steven Rothman
Rep. Donald Payne
Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen
Rep. Rush Holt
Rep. Robert Menendez

New Mexico
Gov. Bill Richardson
Sen. Jeff Bingaman
Sen. Pete V. Domenici
Rep. Heather Wilson
Rep. Steve Pearce
Rep. Tom Udall

New York
Gov. George Pataki
Sen. Charles Schumer
Sen. Hillary Clinton
Rep. Tim Bishop
Rep. Steven Israel
Rep. Peter King
Rep. Carolyn McCarthy
Rep. Gary Ackerman
Rep. Gregory Meeks
Rep. Joseph Crowley
Rep. Jerrold Nadler
Rep. Anthony Weiner
Rep. Edolphus Towns
Rep. Major Owens
Rep. Nydia Velazquez
Rep. Vito Fossella
Rep. Carolyn Maloney
Rep. Charles Rangel
Rep. Jose Serrano
Rep. Eliot Engel
Rep. Nita Lowey
Rep. Sue Kelly
Rep. John Sweeney
Rep. Michael McNulty
Rep. Maurice Hinchey
Rep. John McHugh
Rep. Sherwood Boehlert
Rep. James Walsh
Rep. Thomas Reynolds
Rep. Brian Higgins
Rep. Louise Slaughter
Rep. John Kuhl

North Carolina
Gov. Mike Easley
Sen. Richard Burr
Sen. Elizabeth Dole
Rep. G.K. Butterfield
Rep. Bob Etheridge
Rep. Walter Jones
Rep. David Price
Rep. Virginia Foxx
Rep. Howard Coble
Rep. Mike McIntyre
Rep. Robin Hayes
Rep. Sue Myrick
Rep. Patrick McHenry
Rep. Charles Taylor
Rep. Melvin Watt
Rep. Brad Miller

North Dakota
Gov. John Hoeven
Sen. Kent Conrad
Sen. Byron L. Dorgan
Rep. Earl Pomeroy

Ohio
Gov. Bob Taft
Sen. Mike DeWine
Sen. George Voinovich
Rep. Steve Chabot
Rep. Rob Portman
Rep. Michael Turner
Rep. Michael Oxley
Rep. Paul Gillmor
Rep. Ted Strickland
Rep. David Hobson
Rep. John Boehner
Rep. Marcy Kaptur
Rep. Dennis Kucinich
Rep. Stephanie Jones
Rep. Pat Tiberi
Rep. Sherrod Brown
Rep. Steven LaTourette
Rep. Deborah Pryce
Rep. Ralph Regula
Rep. Tim Ryan
Rep. Robert Ney

Oklahoma
Gov. Brad Henry
Sen. James Inhofe
Sen. Tom Coburn
Rep. John Sullivan
Rep. Dan Boren
Rep. Wes Watkins
Rep. J.C. Watts
Rep. Ernest Istook
Rep. Frank Lucas

Oregon

Gov. Ted Kulongoski
Sen. Gordon Smith
Sen. Ron Wyden
Rep. David Wu
Rep. Greg Walden
Rep. Earl Blumenauer
Rep. Peter DeFazio
Rep. Darlene Hooley

Pennsylvania
Gov. Ed Rendell
Sen. Rick Santorum
Sen. Arlen Specter
Rep. Robert Brady
Rep. Chaka Fattah
Rep. Phil English
Rep. Melissa Hart
Rep. John Peterson
Rep. Jim Gerlach
Rep. Curt Weldon
Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick
Rep. Bill Shuster
Rep. Don Sherwood
Rep. Paul Kanjorski
Rep. John Murtha
Rep. Allyson Schwartz
Rep. Mike Doyle
Rep. Charlie Dent
Rep. Joseph Pitts
Rep. Tim Holden
Rep. Tim Murphy
Rep. Todd Platts

Rhode Island
Gov. Don Carcieri
Sen. Lincoln Chafee
Sen. Jack Reed
Rep. Patrick Kennedy
Rep. James Langevin

South Carolina
Gov. Mark Sanford
Sen. Jim DeMint
Sen. Lindsey Graham
Rep. Henry Brown
Rep. Joe Wilson
Rep. Gresham Barrett
Rep. Bob Inglis
Rep. John Spratt
Rep. James Clyburn

South Dakota
Gov. Mike Rounds
Sen. John Thune
Sen. Tim Johnson
Rep.Stephanie Herseth

Tennessee
Gov. Phil Bredesen
Sen. William H. Frist
Sen. Lamar Alexander
Rep. William Jenkins
Rep. John Duncan, Jr.
Rep. Zach Wamp
Rep. Lincoln Davis
Rep. Jim Cooper
Rep. Bart Gordon
Rep. Marsha Blackburn
Rep. John Tanner
Rep. Harold Ford

Texas
Gov. Rick Perry
Sen. John Cornyn
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison
Rep. Louis Gohmert
Rep. Ted Poe
Rep. Sam Johnson
Rep. Ralph Hall
Rep. Jeb Hensarling
Rep. Joe Barton
Rep. John Culberson
Rep. Kevin Brady
Rep. Al Green
Rep. Michael McCaul
Rep. Mike Conaway
Rep. Kay Granger
Rep. “Mac” Thornberry
Rep. Ron Paul
Rep. Ruben Hinojosa
Rep. Silvestre Reyes
Rep. Chet Edwards
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee
Rep. Randy Neugebauer
Rep. Charles Gonzalez
Rep. Lamar Smith
Rep. Tom DeLay
Rep. Henry Bonilla
Rep. Kenny Marchant
Rep. Lloyd Doggett
Rep. Michael Burgess
Rep. Solomon Ortiz
Rep. Enrique Cuellar
Rep. Gene Green
Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson
Rep. John Carter
Rep. Pete Sessions

Utah
Gov. John Huntsman, Jr.
Sen. Robert F. Bennett
Sen. Orrin G. Hatch
Rep. Rob Bishop
Rep. Jim Matheson
Rep. Chris Cannon

Vermont
Gov. Jim Douglas
Sen. James M. Jeffords
Sen. Patrick J. Leahy
Rep. Bernie Sanders

Virginia
Gov. Mark Warner
Sen. George Allen
Sen. John W. Warner
Rep. Jo Ann Davis
Rep. Thelma Drake
Rep. Robert Scott
Rep. Randy Forbes
Rep. Virgil Goode
Rep. Bob Goodlatte
Rep. Eric Cantor
Rep. Jim Moran
Rep. Rick Boucher
Rep. Frank Wolf
Rep. Tom Davis

Washington
Gov. Christine Gregoire
Sen. Maria Cantwell
Sen. Patty Murray
Rep. Jay Inslee
Rep. Rick Larsen
Rep. Brian Baird
Rep. Doc Hastings
Rep. Cathy McMorris
Rep. Norman Dicks
Rep. Jim McDermott
Rep. Dave Reichert
Rep. Adam Smith

West Virginia
Gov. Joe Manchin III
Sen. Robert C. Byrd
Sen. John D. Rockefeller, IV
Rep. Alan Mollohan
Rep. Shelley Capito
Rep. Nick Rahall

Wisconsin
Gov. Jim Doyle
Sen. Russell D. Feingold
Sen. Herb Kohl
Rep. Paul Ryan
Rep. Tammy Baldwin
Rep. Ron Kind
Rep. Gwen Moore
Rep. James Sensenbrenner
Rep. Tom Petri
Rep. David Obey
Rep. Mark Green

Wyoming
Gov. Dave Freudenthal
Sen. Mike Enzi
Sen. Craig Thomas
Rep. Barbara Cubin

National
President George W. Bush
Vice President Richard B. Cheney

According to the White House, (from www.whitehouse.gov):

The tradition of the Cabinet dates back to the beginnings of the Presidency itself. One of the principal purposes of the Cabinet (drawn from Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution) is to advise the President on any subject he may require relating to the duties of their respective offices.

The Cabinet includes the Vice President and the heads of 15 executive departments-the Secretaries of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, Labor, State, Transportation, Treasury, and Veterans Affairs, and the Attorney General. Under President George W. Bush, Cabinet-level rank also has been accorded to the Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency; Director, Office of Management and Budget; the Director, National Drug Control Policy; and the U.S. Trade Representative.

Therefore the following people, who all have the administration’s ear and a stake in the government, also share the blame:

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff
Department of Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta
Department of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld
Department of Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns
Department of Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez
Department of Education Secretary Margaret Spellings
Department of Energy Secretary Samuel W. Bodman
Department of Health & Human Services Secretary Michael O. Leavitt
Department of Housing & Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson
Department of the Interior Secretary Gale Norton
Department of Justice Attorney General Alberto Gonzales
Department of Labor Secretary Elaine Chao
Department of State Secretary Condoleezza Rice
Department of the Treasury Secretary John Snow
Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Jim Nicholson

Office of Management and Budget Joshua B. Bolten
Environmental Protection Agency Stephen Johnson
White House Chief of Staff
United States Trade Representative Ambassador Rob Portman
Office of National Drug Control Policy John Walters


There are others at fault, but these are their bosses, the people who make sure the others do their jobs right. In my mind, one’s as responsible as any other.

And I don’t want to see another damned press conference with any of these people talking about what good they’ve done until the last victims are safe and sound back in their homes. Then you can start campaigning again.

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2 thoughts on “A list of everyone who COULD have prevented this disaster”

  1. Wow – popwerfull people. I guess there collective consiusness could have deliberately summouned the hurricane.

    Editor’s note: You’re missing the point. These people could not have stopped the hurricane, but they sure as hell could have reinforced the levees, provided adequate Emergency Management support and relief measures… or generally done whatever the hell we’ve been paying Homeland Security to prepare over the past five years. THIS is how they failed. Levees break; we know this. So why has nobody cared to maintain them adequately till now?

  2. Do you know that the USA refused help from lots of other coutries ? Thousands of doctors, nurses, firemen, etc., wanted to help (I’ve seen a lot on french TV complaining but it seems it’s not only France)… They didn’t get the authorization to come on the US soil, with no official reason… but pride, exactly like what do countries like China where they are too ashamed to show they can’t control all (epidemies, hiv, etc.). This is a stupid way to do : even if 1000 rescuers from Europe are not a real effective help (hard to manage, etc.), it is a way for those countries to express solidarity and sympathy… There ain’t any country in the world that can manage easely such a terrible disaster, it is not a shame to accept some help, don’t you think ? Take care. ->Jn from Paris (sorry for my not very good english)

    Editor’s Note: Yes, sadly, the United Nations and many other countries — many of whom just finished work on the Pacific tsunami cleanup — have offered to help out. No idea why that help has been rejected — all I can figure is… well, hell… I have NO idea. Perhaps we should all ask the people named here. Thanks!

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