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DOJ Seeks to Blame Environmental Groups for Levee Failure

Monday, September 19, 2005

Straight from the Jackson Clarion-Ledger:

E-mail sent to various U.S. Attorney's offices:

SUBJECT: Have you had any cases involving the levees in New Orleans?

QUESTION: Has your district defended any cases on behalf of the Army Corps of Engineers against claims brought by environmental groups seeking to block or otherwise impede the Corps' work on the levees protecting New Orleans? If so, please describe the case and the outcome of the litigation.

Great. The Clarion-Ledger snagged this internal email last week, and it sounds like there's a congressional inquiry on the way. Read the whole article -- it cites a National Review piece from earlier this month blaming the flooding on groups that brought a 1996 suit to delay shoring up the levees on the Mississippi until an environmental impact assessment could be conducted. NR apparently didn't mention that it was the Lake Pontchartrain levees, on the other side of the city, that collapsed.

No word yet on whether Bush's decision to cut $400 million from the area's flood control budget will be part of the investigation.

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