Brown told the committee, FEMA's approach worked in Mississippi and Alabama, whose governors are both Republicans.
Of the disastrous flooding that stranded thousands for days in New Orleans, he said, "The only variable was the state government officials involved."
The way FEMA works with state officials in disasters is "well established and works well," Brown said in emphatic tones in his opening statement, pointing his finger and shaking a clenched hand at lawmakers. "Unfortunately, this is the approach that FEMA had great difficulty in getting established in Louisiana."
... "I very strongly, personally regret that I was unable to persuade Governor Blanco and Mayor Nagin to sit down, get over their differences and work together. . . . I just couldn't pull that off."
September 27, 2005
Ousted FEMA director Michael D. Brown testifies before a House panel today and lays the blame on the governor and the mayor: