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Obama’s handling of Sandy in contrast to Bush and Katrina

Oct 31st, 2012 | By | Category: Lead Story, News

PHOTO: The Ulsterman Report

PRESIDENT Barack Obama’s is dealing with Hurricane Sandy the way former President George Bush should have dealt with Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Obama is likely to benefit in the election, says Professor Robert Patman, who lectures in politics at Otago University.

“This difficulty brings the country together,” says Professor Patman.

“It’s probably very frustrating for Romney.”

Professor Patman says the way Obama is putting aside the election and taking to his role as President in handling the situation is what Bush should have done following Hurricane Katrina’s destruction of New Orleans in 2005.

However, Mr Patman warned the disaster could also be a blow for the incumbent Obama.

“It happened on the eastern seaboard, which is quite a strong Democrat area,” he says.

“In longer terms, we’re talking more than a couple of days, if the trains in the subways aren’t running and the power is still out, then people might start blaming Obama for it.”

The Dominion Post yesterday published a story from The Times which stated ”… historically, the impact of bad weather on voter turnout has favoured Republicans over Democrats, and punished incumbents over challengers”.

Dr Katherine Smits, senior lecturer in political studies at Auckland University is picking the disaster to favour Obama.

“I think it’s too early to say what sort of impact this will have on the election, but it will probably benefit the incumbent.”

Dr Smits drew the same Katrina parallels as Dr Patman.

“Obama needs to look positive, step up and act like a president. He needs to be seen doing as much as possible, which is what Bush needed to do after Katrina,” says Dr Smits.


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