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A Glimpse Of GOP Talking Points To Come

Reported by Ellen - September 22, 2005

I predicted last night that FNC would try to use Texas' response to Hurricane Rita as proof that the Louisiana officials, not the federal government, was to blame in Katrina. Tonight, I got a glimpse of those talking points on Hannity & Colmes.

After a slew of officials appeared to say how prepared everybody and everything was - for price gauging, for evacuation, for floods, etc., Greta Van Susteren appeared from Houston.

She described a lot of problems - terrible traffic jams made worse by stuck cars that have run out of gas and are unable to get more. Then she said, "I should note, though, that with all the things we've seen on the highway... I must say that this is a very sort of distressing evacuation, very inconvenient, but compared to what happened in New Orleans where there was no evacuation plan, from my perspective this doesn't look, you know, as bad. I don't want to spend 14 hours in a car like these people but at least there's a plan here in Houston. It may not be flawless but they're trying to get solutions. At this point, at least things are moving, maybe not perfectly."

Of course, Sean Hannity agreed that it was "much, much smoother than what we saw in New Orleans." I'm surprised he didn't ask how many buses the mayor of Houston deployed.

What nobody mentioned is that, as AP reports, "state officials in Texas have more assets than their Gulf Coast counterparts."

To be fair, the program did paint a somber picture of the destruction to come, especially with regard to oil prices, and Van Susteren made it clear that a better evacuation was not necessarily good. But there was no reporting on the effect of the storm on poor people, people of color or the large immigrant population in the Houston area.

I predict that when it comes to government response at all levels in Texas, FOX will be showing us a happy hurricane.

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