Dear New Orleans,
I have an important request for everybody. The president will be visiting this city on October 15. Now, I know that this city is loaded with Democrats. It’s also equally loaded with African Americans. This is the first time since the president’s historic election that he is visiting the city and it wouldn’t be New Orleans if we didn’t lay out the full local experience. I am sure everyone wants the St. Augustine High School band to meet him at the end of the runway and march with him from Air Force One. Once he gets to his first stop I am sure you want the Rebirth Brass Band and The Lady Buck Jumpers to play and dance in his honor. Ms. Leah Chase is probably laying out the menu right now.
All of that sounds good but we better make sure that we get to present every need and concern we have while we have his attention for a short time. Take the president on a helicopter ride over MR-GO and the wetlands. Drive him around and show him all the blight. Make sure he sees all of the closed hospitals. Show him our crime statistics and our budget for NORD. After that, someone needs to have a presentation or something on paper showing him what we plan on doing about all of that and how much it might cost. Make sure he understands that all the complaining about him not visiting the region wasn’t so he could come here and eat at Dooky Chase because it might be awhile before he comes back.
I don’t know if you watch the news but he is a very busy man. There are wars going on, people can’t find jobs, he’s trying to get health care passed and Iran is trying to test him. That's not the whole list of issues he is dealing with but you get the picture. What that says to me is that while the recovery of our city might be a priority, it would be easy to understand if we got lost in the shuffle. We have to make this visit count for something. I don’t think we are going to get a commitment for any extra money because of one visit but President Obama is the kind of man that would welcome extra conversation if your argument is compelling. I don’t want to watch news stories the next day full of nothing but a good time. Let’s focus on the real agenda first and then someone can bring him and Mrs. Obama to The Perfect Fit that evening.