April 24th, 2008
03:20 PM ET
12 years ago

McCain criticizes Bush administration on Katrina response


McCain toured the lower 9th ward Thursday, and criticized the Bush administration for its response to Hurricane Katrina. (Getty Images)

(CNN) - John McCain, speaking to supporters at Xavier University Thursday afternoon, blasted all levels of government - including the Bush administration - for the failed response to Hurricane Katrina.

“We know we didn’t have the right kind of leadership … where government agencies were getting information from watching cable television rather than have a flow of information,” McCain said.

“It was not only a perfect storm as far as its physical impact … it was a perfect storm as far as the federal, state and local governments’ inability.”

In a strong tone, McCain said “never again will there be a mismanaged natural disaster,” later assuring the crowd that “it will never happen again in this country, you have my commitment and my promise.”

McCain is currently on a week-long tour of economically struggling areas of the country, which included stops in Alabama, Ohio, Kentucky and Louisiana.

Earlier Thursday he toured New Orleans’ lower 9th ward, - among the areas hardest hit by Katrina - with his wife Cindy and Lousiana’s GOP Gov. Bobby Jindal. The three walked about 20 minutes through the lower ninth, stopping at a house being rebuilt by about a dozen volunteers from DeutscheBank in New York City.

"I'm proud to be in your company. You're what America's all about," McCain told them.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (213 Responses)
  1. Yes we can!

    He was in Selma Alabama Tuesday, hanging out in New Orleans today....can anyone say "the black vote"......

    April 24, 2008 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  2. ivan

    Better late than never.
    But why did it take so long to admit what was obvious, putting PARTY LOYALTY before your straight shooting.

    April 24, 2008 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  3. Carrie PA

    John McCain is part of the federal government. During Katrina, he should have expressed his concerns and did something. Only now running for president, John McCain cares.

    April 24, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  4. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    He can't be any worse at hiring people for jobs. I would hope that McCain would get someone to run FEMA that actually has some experience dealing with disasters.

    April 24, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  5. Will

    How is he gonna help Katrina? Continuing to cut governmental spending and taking it away from reconstruction and welfare projects to help support Katrina victims further? Sounds like the Bush Administrations plan...

    April 24, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  6. Tony Z- MD

    Smart move on his part. He is trying to appeal to the America. He distances himself for the most part from Bush and denounces racist scare tactics. Why? He knows against Obama this is what it will take to win. Against Clinton, he knows that the African American community might be up for grabs.

    Look at states like MD, NC and SC. In PG County, MD- which is strongly Democratic, but our council supported Steele for Senator.

    The race for the White House in on.

    April 24, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  7. DoneWithDems

    Take a lesson dems.

    April 24, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  8. Anna

    It is not the first time that McCain has critisized Bush. If you really follow the news and read the articles thoroughly and not just the headlines, you will find out that McCain critisized the administration the week after Katrina happened and not only now. McCain was not in the "admininstration" he was in the Senate. People, please learn the difference between the Executive branch of the Government and the Legislative before spouting your ignorant hate filled opinions.

    April 24, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  9. mdg

    Excuse me, Senator but where was YOUR leadership during those awful ?
    The President flew over New Orleans on his way to party with you in CA. You guys had a good ole time, strumming that air guitar, remember?
    Oh, maybe you don't remember. Never mind.

    April 24, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  10. Ed


    April 24, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  11. Teacher

    You're kidding me, right? Where is the responsibility of the Mayor of New Orleans and the Governor of Louisiana???

    April 24, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  12. Roger

    I'll definately vote for McCain if Hillary dosn't win the nomination. He is looking more and more like a gentleman everyday.

    April 24, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  13. Annapolis Democrat

    I liek his hat, but his belt doesn't fit him. And his politics don't fit me.

    April 24, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  14. sky

    And then, out of the clear blue sky, McCain found his Kahunas

    April 24, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  15. Steve TX 34

    It's so funny to see the left bias postings. No intellect...only emotion.

    April 24, 2008 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  16. Stick To The Issues

    April 24th, 2008 2:18 pm ET

    I like him for 2 things : he is a man of honor and he'll be really tough with Islam, Terrorism and Iran.


    This is exactly why so many countries hate America. Islam is a freaking religion, not a crime, not an epidemic, and not a war to fought. The fact that people like Pat think Islam should be destroyed really distrubs me. I guess no one ever told you it is the World's largest religion. Freaking American arrogance is destroying us when it comes to global politics.

    And I'm a Christian. A Southern Baptist at that.

    April 24, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  17. Hillarygetoutof therace

    Old man Mccain spining trying to decive us we have heard than from Bush as the saying goes you full me once shame on you full me twice shame on me. No more BushMccain.

    April 24, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  18. John in Iowa

    The responsibility of the Hurrican Katrina aftermath lies solely with the Louisiana leadership. All the Louisiana leadership did was publicly cry on national t.v. The mayor simply blamed anybody he could think of. This was anybody's fault but the feds!

    April 24, 2008 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  19. kayla

    mcsame you are wasting your time you know darn well you cannot do anything for katrina victims. nor will not do anything because you are a phoney. just like your president!

    April 24, 2008 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  20. Foreign observer

    It´s easy said that there will be no future missmanagement. In fact M.C. in his life never was a manager. Means that he will show his temper and blame others for "bad" management.

    April 24, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  21. Doug R.

    McCain was mum in the aftermath of Katrina. Why is he making his position known now?? Why wasn't he critical of Bush, the administration, and the horse lawyer Brown previously??

    April 24, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  22. pigo

    god bless america. finally mccain saw katrina land.what a phonyman

    April 24, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  23. Jazzplayer

    It's 3 years later and now he has something critical to say about the response to Katrina??? What has he been doing for the last 3 years about getting the promised money & aid that is still stuck in Washington to the Gulf coast? He is an old, tired, worthless worn out old white man that is trying to pimp for the black vote. He is now and will always be a pretender. If he is elected he will finish what his 'leader' started – which is to destroy this country – 4 more years of failed policies should just about do it.

    April 24, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  24. Don Tate

    I would say John McCain knows suffering , He doesn't have to fake it. I would say he has experienced in his battered flesh what few people have in their worst dreams,. So ease up on the cutesy-pie insults. How easy to be brave and arrogant and all knowing, brushing away a man's honor and heroism like dead flies, when you are safely in the arena of hot-air, not life and death.

    April 24, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  25. Mike in Virginia

    Yeah... I would say you people crack me up.. but you don't. This, the presidency of the United States of America, is serious business. So let's all just jump down this guys throat and say he's lying, pandering, etc... After all, the rest of you took off from work and went down to help the great people of New Orleans, right? Or you at least sent the same amount of money that you are now donating to Obama to help out those that really, really needed it. Didn't you?

    April 24, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
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