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Sunday, September 4, 2005
Ruddy Misquotes, Slanders La. Official
Topic: Newsmax
At NewsMax, finding ways to blame Clinton for the Hurricane Katrina aftermath will have to wait. First, it has to deflect blame from President Bush.

NewsMax editor Christopher Ruddy weighed in with a Sept. 4 column blaming it all on New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin and Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco. And he falsely quotes another Louisiana official in the process, portraying him as a money-hungry incompetent.

Ruddy falsely claimed that Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard, in an appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press," "ended his performance as he collapsed in tears with a demand: 'For God's sake, just shut up and send us the money!'"

But that's not what Broussard said; he said "send us somebody," not "send us the money."

Ruddy also failed to offer the full context of Broussard's statement, which came after recounting an emotional anecdote in which his parish's head of emergency management continually promised his trapped mother that help would arrive, and she died before she could be rescued. Yet Ruddy claimed that Broussard's "tears didn't wash with me," than blamed him for the aftermath:

My sympathies lay with the tens of thousands of people who have suffered or died because local officials like Broussard, Mayor Nagin, and Governor Kathleen Blanco, also a Democrat, failed at their jobs in a monumental way.

This demonstrates what NewsMax's priority will be in the near future -- damage control for Bush.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:43 PM EDT

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