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Damn the Hurricane - Full Lobbying Ahead!

Posted by Brooke Shelby Biggs on May 10th, 2006

More emails to and from former FEMA heavy Michael "Brownie" brown have emerged from the week of Hurricane Katrina's landfall, illustrating just how much non-Katrina business was going down as Brown fluffed his hair and the devil bore down on New Orleans. We checked out The Center for Public Integrity's analysis ...

Among the missives was one -- hours after the hurricane made landfall -- from former Arkansas Senator Tim Hutchinson, brother of GOP Congressional power-broker Asa Hutchinson. It said:

"I am certain you are overwhelmed by the situation regarding Hurricane Katrina. I apologize for bothering you at this critical time and for going directly to you about this," wrote former Sen. Tim Hutchinson (R-Ark.) "I would very much appreciate being able to bring the President of Blu-Med Response Systems, Gerritt Boyle, in to meet with you as soon as your schedule permits."

While Blu-Med indeed supplies emergency health facilities and might have been of use in the immediate crisis, that was not what this urgent meeting was about. It was, instead, scheduled to be a face-to-face whine about the fact one of Blu-Med's competitors had won a non-Katrina contract Blu-Med itself had wanted, and they were using their friendly ties with Hutchinson to push the issue.