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Monday, February 18, 2008

Wolf Blitzer saw missed opportunity

Wolf Blitzer and other CNN anchors were in New Orleans last weekend for the NBA Tech Summit. While in NOLA, Blitzer took a tour of the Lower Ninth Ward, spent time in Baton Rouge with Louisiana Governor, Bobby Jindal and sat down with two NBA legends, Charles Barkley and Magic Johnson.

Mr. Blitzer wrote a blog post this afternoon on the Political Ticker about what he calls an "historic opportunity" missed by the Commission on Presidential Debates. He writes:

It’s really pretty sad that the Commission on Presidential Debates — both its Democratic and Republican leaders — decided New Orleans wasn’t yet ready to host one of three scheduled presidential debates between the party conventions at the end of the summer and the November 4 election.

A debate there would have sent a powerful message to the people of the city and to the country that the political leadership cares and remains deeply committed to its reconstruction.

When the commission made its decision a few weeks ago, I assumed that New Orleans wasn’t yet ready for prime time. But having spent the last few days there, I can now say New Orleans is more than ready. It just did a fabulous job hosting the NBA All-Star Game and related weekend activities.

The business leaders and people of the city did a really solid job welcoming thousands of NBA owners, executives, advertisers, and fans. The hotels were first-rate. Transportation around the city — to and from the various events including the big game — was smooth.

In my opinion, the fact that New Orleans was passed over for a presidential debate sends a glaring message to all of our citizens that both parties are not willing to address our nation's greatest failure. As Mr. Blitzer points out, the city of New Orleans did a wonderful job hosting the NBA All-Star weekend. Hotels, businesses, transportation and restaurants did a superb job handling stars and fans alike. Why then can't the city entertain politicians and the press for a presidential debate? Answer: Because the largest systematic breakdown of this nation's bureaucracy would be the major spotlight of the event. And that my friends (as John McCain would say) would be a political no-no.

Click here to read Wolf Blitzer's blog post about his time spent touring the Lower Ninth Ward. ~Sheryn

(Photo credits: Blitzer photo courtesy of Caufield/WireImage; Katrina photo courtesy of Google Images)

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1 comment:

Phebe said...

NOLA would have been a great choice to host a debate. But I guess featuring a city's rebirth, despite the US government's assistance, is not in the best interest of politicians.