In a recent interview on WBAP on August 21st, 2023, political strategist Raven Harrison discusses President Biden's avoidance of commenting on the devastating Maui wildfires. "No comment" seems to be a common theme in the Biden White House. The lack of response from the president has raised frustration among many, leading to criticism and questions about his leadership during crises.
WBAP August 21st, 2023 with Raven Harrison
During the interview, Raven Harrison points out the repeated pattern of President Biden's avoidance of commenting on significant issues, including the wildfires in Maui. She highlights how this lack of immediate response to disasters raises concerns about effective leadership and prioritization of American citizens' needs.
- Ernie Brown: As politics as usual. President Biden previously offering no comment when he was asked about the Maui wildfires. No comment. Let's just say thoughts and prayers, that's something. President Biden once again avoiding comment regarding wildfires that devastated Maui last week to many ex users' frustration as Twitter.
- On Thursday, reporters at questioning Biden about his upcoming trip to the state following ongoing criticism about his response to the disaster. That is taking now at least 111 lives, and though the president was previously attacked for offering no comment, Biden continued to avoid commenting on the trip and they said, "Can you tell us about the Hawaii trip, sir?"
- He said, "Not now. I'm gonna be leaving, and I'll be there on Monday." And then he walked away. Joining us right now is Raven Harrison. She's a political strategist and…
- Raven, always great to have you on the program. What is going on here with the president?
- Raven Harrison: I mean, the politics aside on this. How soon should the president go to a disaster area because this seems like it's taking an awful long time? It is, and this is, and thanks for having me. If this is more of what I work. I'm going to affectionately label by me. Of you have to learn to speak, which is we're basically not anywhere near these debacles, not Afghanistan, not the southern border, and now Hawaii. And you're correct. We have 111 that are confirmed dead and rising, and we have a thousand that are missing, and no comment, "I'll be there on Monday." PS don't forget to write those checks for 24 billion dollars to Ukraine. And what we're seeing right now, the response is seven hundred dollars the residents of Hawaii are receiving, seven hundred dollars per resident as a means of recouping and rebuilding was catastrophic. So, to answer your question, when is the response immediate? The people of East Palestine had the same problem. He was nowhere to be found. Drinking water not safe, people not sure what resources they had available and just a wall. I mean, when there's a hurricane, there's a disaster. We need leadership. We need the president on the ground, assessing the damage and making sure the resources get to the people who need it.
- Ernie: You know, Raven, as we talk about that, I was thinking about all the criticism that George W. Bush faced when he wasn't acting quickly enough on Katrina. He said he didn't want to be a distraction. Is there any validity to that argument by a president?
- Raven: Zero. We would take that if this was a one-off isolated because it is catastrophic damage. But this is the same pattern he had with the border, you know? 20 billion dollars in two years later, he finally made a five-minute trip to the border. East Palestine had a train derailment that people were worried about their water. They had no FEMA, no resources. Everybody was traveling, and this seems to be the pattern. He's not worried about being in the way. He just does not have. He's not covering the American people. His interests are his green energy and Ukraine, and he's made no secret about that.
- So, you know, if you look at what Ukraine's have gotten, 42 billion dollars in past aid. Now they're getting another 24 that he's asked Congress for, and the residents of Hawaii who need it now are getting $700 a person.
- Ernie: To be fair to President Biden, if I can, Raven Harrison, a political strategist, that area there in Maui is very uneven and President Biden has a very tenuous relationship with gravity. So maybe there's just a concern that, you know, he might trip and fall incident. Maybe he's just waiting for it to be paved.
- Raven: Yeah, you know, like I said, we're not even sure we can get the teleprompter in a lot of these areas. So you never know what's going on with that. But I mean, I'm telling you, it's definitely, it's almost like, you know, "Hey, we need to say something," and he goes, "Okay, no comment." Okay, never mind. What we're telling people is that this is what you need to pay attention to. But thank goodness, you know, the people of Maui are very resilient and they seem to be somehow coping and rebuilding despite the absence of obvious leadership.
- Ernie: I think it's just they're just keeping their heads down and trying to focus on something because I can't even imagine trying to process the devastation that they're experiencing right now.
- Hey, Raven Harrison is our political strategist, and in the realm of strategy, I made the argument a few weeks ago that former President Trump shouldn't be doing any debates. He leads by too much. There's all risk, no reward. Yeah, okay, so you're with me on this, right? I mean, he says he's not gonna participate, and I guess I would say, well, why would he? If you were advising him, you would have said the same thing: stay away.
- Raven: I would have absolutely said that because it's essentially, you know, they're gonna be doing is taking shots at Trump, and what everybody's wanted to see is can somebody break out of Trump's shadow. So this is their opportunity now without the limelight being on him for them to showcase another way they can shine. But it's not gonna happen. It's not gonna happen. What it will be interesting to see is while he's on with Tucker, while all these other candidates take the stage to, you know, again distinguish themselves in some way. So are they gonna use it as an opportunity to go attack Trump? I mean, Chris Christie already has. He's calling him, "Oh, he's afraid of me." I'm pretty sure he's not, but at the end of the day, you know, this is their opportunity, and if all you've got is, you know, Trump, Trump, Trump, Trump, this is exactly why he's leading the field.
- Ernie: How mad is Fox News right now? You know, they're getting the debates, and yet it's their former guy Tucker that's getting the draw on the other platform. So, I mean, Fox has got to be pissed.
- Raven: Oh, they have to be. This is ultimate checkmate, and Donald Trump has been playing 5D chess, and they've been playing checkers since 2015. But the issue is he's got them right at checkmate. You've got Tucker and Donald Trump pulling the stage where people have to decide if they're gonna watch, you know, 15 other candidates who want to be Trump or they're gonna watch Trump and Tucker, and it is gonna be ratings gold for them, and it's gonna be a potential nightmare for Fox.
- Ernie: So, Raven Harrison, our political strategist, what happens then with the Fox ratings? I mean, not only do we expect their ratings to be down again, I don't even know if I would watch without former President Trump on the stage. But how does someone then establish themselves if nobody's watching? Isn't that kind of yelling into an empty room?
- Raven: Correct. And another area by is good at. But what we will say is you have to remember that, you know, people, where's the draw? So, like him or hate him, I have to really admire CNN inviting him on that town hall, and everybody thought he was crazy. And I said, you know, President Trump goes into the fire with steaks and popcorn. This is what you have to do. So this is the only way they're gonna grab these ratings back is to be able to find a breakout star among the other ones who are running for President because other than that, they're just gonna steal the show. And this is one of those things that you're gonna have to find a way to have a holy or unholy alliance with President Trump. He's taking his star power with him, and he's just decided it's not gonna be used, which is something the Republican Party got very used to during the first campaign. So now they're gonna have to figure out, he's gonna go, "Okay, fine. I'll just take a step back and let you guys do this." And I think he's gonna be sending a powerful message when he does.
- Ernie: Raven Harrison, our political strategist, final question. And Raven, as others are trying to make a mark and differentiate themselves, we know that there's gonna be this big, not indictment, but the booking stuff going on in Georgia. Is anybody gonna be talking about the debate after former President Trump kind of sucks the air out of the room with that whole spectacle?
- Raven: It'll be unlikely, and there's been a lot of rumors that President Trump is gonna be making a big announcement, and we think it has a lot to do. Strategists think it has a lot to do with him being able to crumble this whole narrative. We already know the grand jury, how this came about, did not follow procedure and protocol. They basically had the indictment out before they even finished approving and interviewing people for this so he's already got a case filed, which shows you that the desperation is not even allowing them to follow protocol. So I think after this debate, they're gonna try again, and as each one of these falls apart, he's gonna get stronger and stronger.
- Ernie: All right, Raven Harrison, our political strategist, always great talking to appreciate it. Have a great week.
In light of President Biden's refusal to comment on the Maui wildfires, concerns have arisen about his commitment to addressing crises and providing support to affected communities. The interview with Raven Harrison sheds light on the frustrations of both the public and political strategists, who question the president's priorities. This serves as a reminder of the importance of strong leadership and immediate response in times of crisis. "No comment" is not an acceptable response.