Originally published January 13 2013
Obama lied to Hurricane Sandy victims; exploited them for pre-election photo ops
by J. D. Heyes
(NaturalNews) Those who practice it say politics is a blood sport, and most Americans are well aware of how savage politics can be, but even the most callous and jaded among us still shake our heads in disbelief when politicians use tragic events as little more than a campaign stop.
And yet it seems as though President Obama may have done just that when he visited victims of Superstorm Sandy in the days leading up to the November election.
At least, that's what one victim thinks.
Per Philadelphia Magazine:
On October 31st, in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, a soon-to-be-reelected President Barack Obama joined New Jersey Governor Chris Christie for a survey of the devastation at the Jersey Shore. In Brigantine, Obama embraced distraught local business owner Donna Vanzant, whose North Point Marina sustained widespread damage during the storm.
A photo of Obama hugging Vanzant went viral online, as did his promise to her of "immediate" assistance in the storm's aftermath (in what was viewed as yet another dig at former President George W. Bush, whose administrations' response to victims of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 was pronounced serially incompetent by the masters of corporate media, yet Obama's equally hapless response has been given a pass).
How'd that work out for you?
In a rare bit of old-fashioned follow-up journalism, though, the magazine's Victor Fiorillo recently contacted Vanzant to find out if the president made good on his promise.
To which she replied, in a word, no.
Vanzant said in early January that as of that date she had not received any settlement from her insurance company. She said she knew that some people had gotten some monetary relief from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), but she also acknowledged the fact that the organization doesn't provide funding for businesses.
"I'm waiting on my flood policy to come through and help rebuild," she said of her insurance company. "Without them sending the money, I can't start."
She said her insurer, RLI Corp., doesn't return her calls and that many other insurance companies "have also been dragging their feet with the owners of the boats who dock here."
What about Obama's promise? How'd that turn out, Fiorillo wanted to know.
It's all about image, right?
"After his visit, I sent an email to President Obama. Many days later, I got a response back. It was disturbing," said Vanzant, who estimates she suffered about $500,000 in monetary losses, as well as another $200,000 in docks and her bulkhead.
"It had nothing to do with what I was asking him. It was a form letter. It thanked me for supporting the troops. He made a promise to rebuild on national television, and I can't even get this money. It's heartbreaking, really," she said.
"When you get a hug from the President of the United States, you feel like there's something there. A promise was made. I have two grown kids. One is a U.S. Navy diver. The other one lives at the marina with his wife and new baby, and they lost everything," she said. "But I raised my kids to know that your word is your word. You promise something, you keep it, and that was a broken promise. I've never been a person to expect free handouts, but the President gave me hope. But now, I just don't know."
Not if that promise is made as part of a campaign photo op, apparently.
As Dan Delzell of the Christian Post puts it, "It has always been about image for our current president."
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