- - Monday, August 29, 2011


Obama: On anniversary, more need for vigilance

President Obama said the sixth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina illustrates the need for the federal government to respond as best it possibly can to natural disasters.

He said his administration’s improved emergency readiness was evident over the weekend in reaction to Hurricane Irene.

Katrina struck six years ago Monday and became a symbol for government failure. Mr. Obama, in a statement, said his administration has improved emergency response to be “more resilient after disaster strikes.”

He said Americans should continue efforts to make sure that New Orleans and the Gulf Coast recover.

Mr. Obama maintained a high profile in advance of Hurricane Irene, warning residents along the Eastern Seaboard to be vigilant.

He said emergency responders will address the needs of communities hit by Irene “as quickly and effectively” as possible.


Lawmaker: Obama uncle will have “advantage”

One congressman wants to know whether President Obama’s half-uncle will be granted “amnesty” under new rules the administration announced earlier this month designed to let lower-priority illegal immigrants remain in the country.

Rep. Steve King, an Iowa Republican who has fought for an immigration crackdown, said Onyango Obama, a relative of the president’s, “will have an advantage … when it comes time to determine who is granted amnesty.”

“This raises a troubling list of questions about the potential for preferential treatment,” Mr. King said. He and several other members of Congress have called for hearings to investigate the new rules, announced by Homeland Security Secretary Janet A. Napolitano two weeks ago. Under those rules, immigrants who are in deportation proceedings will be evaluated and, if they are not deemed high-priority targets, officials are allowed to use discretion to end proceedings.

Those under final orders for deportation are not subject to the new rules yet, though Ms. Napolitano has asked a working group to see whether it can provide discretion in those cases, too. According to news reports, Onyango Obama is currently violating a deportation order.


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