Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is getting generally positive reviews for his performance during the approach of Hurricane Gustav:
BATON ROUGE, Sept. 2 — He talks about “helo assets,” military-speak for helicopters. He delivers recovery statistics rapid-fire. And in a nod to local sporting passions, he frequently resorts to football analogies.
“The evacuation was the pregame,” Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) announced at a press conference Tuesday, appearing calm and unruffled amid the commotion of Hurricane Gustav. “We’re not yet at halftime. We have a lot more work ahead of us.”
Thrust in the spotlight by Gustav, Jindal, 37, a political whiz kid in office for all of eight months, is asserting mastery over his state’s response to the natural disaster — just the sort that can have serious consequences for politicians.
“Bobby Jindal has been pitch perfect during Gustav,” said Douglas Brinkley, who wrote “The Great Deluge,” which describes the chaos after Katrina. “He promised to be a hands-on administrator, and I think he delivered. He had such an easy factual grasp of the situation. It’s almost the exact opposite of Blanco and [New Orleans Mayor C. Ray] Nagin during Katrina.”
Is that the sole reason that Gustav did not prove to be as big a humanitarian crisis as Katrina ? Perhaps, perhaps not, but at least Jindal didn’t fiddle while New Orleans drowned like his predecessor did.