Former FEMA director Michael Brown appears to have perjured himself when he testified at a Congressional hearing yesterday. Brown falsely claimed under oath that Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco failed to include three New Orleans-area counties in her federal emergency declaration prior to Hurricane Katrina. From Think Progress:
REP. STEVE BUYER (R): So I’d like to know why did the president’s federal emergency assistance declaration of August 27th not include the parishes of Orleans, Jefferson and Plaquemines?
BROWN: …[I]f a governor does not request a particular county or a particular parish, that’s not included in the request.
BUYER: All right. Orleans Parish is New Orleans. I was listening to my colleague, Mr. Jefferson’s, questions about when they talked about, you know, they asked for this assistance for three days and then [the] president responded the very next day, not the day that it was made — the request — but the governor of Louisiana actually excluded New Orleans from the president’s federal emergency assistance declaration?
BROWN: Again, Congressman, we looked at the request.The governors make the request by…
BUYER: Let me ask this. Since you went through the exercise in Pam, was that not shocking to you that the governor would [have] excluded New Orleans from the declaration?
BUYER: When that request came in excluding these three parishes, did you question it?
BROWN: We questioned it. But I made the decision that we were going to go ahead and move assets in regardless because we have the ability to add those parishes…
In fact, Gov. Blanco requested the President to declare a disaster in “all the southeastern parishes,” which includes Orleans, Jefferson and Plaquemines.
You can read Governor Blanco’s request here.