Flooded-out Louisiana continues to wait for Hillary to act presidential
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18 days.

That's the amount of time it's been since historic flooding began in Louisiana.

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The Red Cross has called it the worst storm to hit the U.S. since Superstorm Sandy. When all was said and done, 13 people were killed, 150,000 homes and businesses were damaged, 265,000 children are out of school and more than 100,000 have applied for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Three days after the devastation occurred, Republican presidential nominee Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump says 'Failing New York Times' should be held 'fully accountable' over Russia report Trump says 'Failing New York Times' should be held 'fully accountable' over Russia report Trump tweets ICE will begin removing 'millions' of undocumented migrants MORE and running mate Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PencePence communications director to leave White House White House crowd sings 'Happy Birthday' to Trump Trump won't say if he'd endorse Pence in 2024 MORE toured and area and handed out supplies. President Obama — rightly criticized both for not interrupting his Martha's Vineyard vacation to visit, but more importantly, not even making one statement on the matter while away — went to Louisiana five days after Trump and Pence.

Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBroadway play 'Hillary and Clinton' closing early due to low ticket sales Broadway play 'Hillary and Clinton' closing early due to low ticket sales Facing challenge from Warren, Sanders touts strength against Trump MORE has promised she will only visit the area "at a time when the presence of a political campaign will not disrupt the response." Most media collectively nodded it’s head in agreement with Clinton's perspective and have moved on since the waters receded.

So here we are, nearly three weeks after the fact. Her opponent and her former boss have each gone to the state, both reportedly not hampering recovery efforts in any capacity. If Clinton went now all this time later, it's doubtful she would be getting in the way of anything.

While the national media has moved on, The Advocate — Louisiana's largest newspaper — directly challenged Clinton four days ago in an op-ed:

"Clinton has said she’d rather wait to visit when her presence won’t be a distraction from relief efforts. But if the incumbent president of the United States can visit Louisiana without doing apparent harm to flood response operations, then surely the woman who’s a leading contender to succeed him can do the same," the editorial says.

"Louisiana is a reliably red state with few electoral votes, and Clinton isn’t likely to flip it to her column in the coming election," it continues. "But Louisiana’s crisis should be a call to conscience and compassion, not the cold calculus of electoral math. The scale of this disaster argues for sustained, bipartisan resolve to rebuild our broken state.

"If she wants to be the next president, Hillary Clinton should act like one, and come to Louisiana."

Well stated. But unfortunately, we live in a media world where attention deficit disorder rules. Louisiana is already in well in the rearview mirror. And with Clinton not having done a press conference in about the time it takes to complete a pregnancy to term (269 days), it's likely no one is going to be able to ask her when or even if she plans on fulfilling her promise.

So with going directly to the source now off the table, perhaps cable news can follow up with a surrogate or campaign manager like Robby Mook to get an answer. But news moves so fast now, especially in an age of Trump-Twitter that almost seems to dictate it, following up on Clinton/Louisiana is as much of a long-shot as her winning the state.

Ask yourself this: If this kind of historic flooding that affected so many people happened in a key swing — states like North Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio or Iowa — would Clinton have visited by now?

This Monday is Labor Day, which usually marks the day before regular folks outside the political and media start really paying attention to a presidential race.

It also marks 20 days before the first debate in Hempstead, N.Y., which means lots of prep for an unpredictable Trump in that time wedged in between whirlwind campaigning in a tightening race (the RealClearPolitics average spread is only 4.7 points).

Another question: Will Clinton even have a day to sacrifice to go a state that is well off the radar and one with few electoral votes that she has no chance of winning?

Let's see if the media can improve its memory problems on this one.

Given the ADD it suffers from more and more, it's doubtful it will.

Concha is a media reporter for The Hill.


 

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