President Obama addressed media at 1pm ET today, reviewing a conversation he had with Haitian President Rene Preval. Obama said he emphasized to Perval, “We realize that he needs more help and that his country needs more help.”
The administration is pulling out all of the stops to make sure relief efforts go smoothly. And, they are also making a big media push. As we reported earlier, Obama will pen a cover story for Newsweek on the topic and first lady Michelle Obama is already appearing in a public service campaign for the Ad Council, which the organization told the Times is its “fastest response to a disaster.”
Margaret Dunning, Principal & Chief Strategy Officer of D.C.-based Widmeyer Communications said in a phone interview with PRNewser today, “to me his comments are for multiple and differing audiences – the American people, our allies, and for those with whom we’re not necessarily so friendly.” Widmeyer represents a number of government agencies and Dunning has previously worked with the Ad Council.
“He has to show that we can be responsive to a disaster in a short period of time, but he has the added pressure of the image of his predecessor, so he must show a quick response. We saw what happened in Katrina with [American] infrastructure. Haiti has no infrastructure, which is all the more reason why a quick response is necessary,” she said.