Barbour's post-Katrina "miracle"
Chris Kromm and Sue Sturgis shine a hard light on Katrina recovery in Mississippi:
Today, Hancock County and the rest of coastal Mississippi are 21 months into a recovery that has garnered Gov. Haley Barbour lavish praise. Governing magazine named Barbour its 2006 Public Official of the Year largely due to his supposed post-Katrina leadership and savvy, including his skill in convincing federal lawmakers to channel billions of relief dollars to the Magnolia State. As Billy Hewes III, a Republican official from Gulfport, said: "He is to Katrina what Rudy Giuliani was to 9/11." Outsiders might be surprised to learn then, that despite the plaudits, and despite the fact that Barbour's GOP connections seem to have won him a disproportionate share of relief money from Washington, post-Katrina recovery in some of the hardest-hit areas of the Mississippi coast is moving as fast as molasses in winter. [Salon]
We learn that almost two years after the storm, residents of Hancock County, still aren't getting their mail because their post office still hasn't been rebuilt. Nor, for that matter, has any other major public building in the county.
Pretty shabby, when you consider how much more generous the Bush administration has been towards Barbour's Republican MS than it has been to Blanco's Democratic LA.
Read Kromm and Sturgis to learn why Barbour is being hailed as reconstruction hero while alligators are still prowling the ruins of the Mississippi Gulf Coast.