Martinez: Vitter trying to 'get attention?'

Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.) suggested today that his fellow Republican Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) is just trying to "get attention" by holding up the nominee to head FEMA.

Some background: Obama nominated Craig Fugate, former head of Florida's emergency response, to be administrator of FEMA. Vitter is holding up the nomination in response to a spat with FEMA over housing in southern Louisiana. Martinez and Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), as Fugate's home state senators, are supporting the nomination.

Today, the St. Petersburg Times caught the Florida senators on their way into the chamber and asked if they could get Vitter to drop his objections:
"I'm trying to talk him out of it," Nelson told Buzz. "Let me go work on him, then I'll come back and tell you."

But about a half-hour later, Nelson emerged empty-handed. "We couldn't find him."

Martinez was even more direct, saying it's urgent that Fugate take the helm of FEMA before hurricane season starts. He also took a not-so-veiled shot at Vitter for playing politics with the nomination.
"He needs to be in there," Martinez said. "Some people utilize (the nominations) process as a way of making a point, or getting attention."

Ouch.

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