On Thursday, President Obama appointed Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan to lead the rebuilding efforts in the Northeast impacted by Hurricane Sandy.
After touring parts of Staten Island that Hurricane Sandy ravaged, Obama said Donovan would be “working with the mayor, the governor, the borough presidents, the county officials” in his new capacity.
“I have every confidence that Shaun is going to be doing a great job and people should feel some confidence about that,” Obama said.
Obama took an aerial tour of the Rockaways and other areas impacted by the storm and met with first responders and local officials who have been more effective than FEMA in getting help to residents struggling without power.
Obama told reporters “there’s still a lot of cleanup to do.”
“People still need emergency help,” Obama said. “They still need heat. They still need power. They still need food. They still need shelter.”
Even amidst the seriousness, there was still infighting among New York’s top politicians. According to The Hill, New York Gov. Cuomo announced “a plan to request $30 billion in hurricane recovery funds from the federal government — but appears to have done so without consulting Schumer and Gillibrand.”
Obama and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney made veiled references to the infighting, with Carney saying the administration would do all that it could to cut the bureaucratic “red tape” to help areas impacted by Sandy rebuild faster.