Durbin: D.C. residents panic as if snowstorm is 'a nuclear attack'

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) blasted Washingtonians for going “into a full-scale panic” during snowstorms, unlike people from Illinois who “know how to live with it.”

“I first came here as a student in 1963 … I lived a big part of my life, at least part-time, in Washington, D.C.,” Durbin said in remarks delivered on the Senate floor on Thursday. “I never could get over how people in this town reacted to snow.

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“I am convinced that infants born in Washington, D.C., are taken from the arms of their loving mothers right when they are born into a room where someone shows a film of a snowstorm with shrieking and screaming so that those children come to believe snow is a mortal enemy, like a nuclear attack, because I have seen, for over 40 years here, people in this town go into a full-scale panic at the thought of a snowfall.

“We joke about it. Those of us from parts of the country that get snow and know how to live with it cannot get over how crazy the reaction is many times."

Durbin, however, acknowledged that this past week’s worth of snowfall — which, with more than 55 inches, broke D.C.’s record — was due cause for D.C.-area residents to be concerned.

“But in fairness, this has been a heck of a snowstorm … You had every right to be concerned. Some of the other [storms], maybe not, but this one was the real deal.”