An Infuriated Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser Goes Viral


The AP ran a relatively brief report that is being picked up by a host of media outlets, but more detail is emerging from the big story on oil fouling Louisiana’s marshes. Video from sources like WWL-TV in New Orleans shows Mr. Nungesser’s heated confrontation with the Coast Guard.

For anybody thinking that the tension surrounding the spill response has eased, they need look no further than the WWL-TV coverage.

It’s worth remembering that Mr. Nungesser got lots and lots of network news face-time when the BP spill was leading national news every day. The Plaquemines Parish president can shine a spotlight on the overall BP strategy, which is, of course, to wait it out until people “move on.” We see that in the claims process, in the investigative process and perhaps, most importantly, in the seafood safety issue (see previous posts).

Here’s some of the confrontation, which is better to watch than read (see video link below):

Coast Guard Lt. Commander Dan Lauer: “No one is walking away…clearly these are high priorities, but there are different phases in different areas accordingly.”

Mr. Nungesser (interrupting, with clear sarcasm): “Oh, it’s a priority, look at it…what is it eight and a half months later? Thank God we’re not out here asking for ammo to defend this country. And this is a priority? Their priorities are wrong. They’re hoping we go away, we get tired.”

Welcome to the new year, with a raft of BP issues and investigations and statements. But let’s remember that eight and a half months after the spill, we’re assured that there will soon be a plan for restoring the Gulf.

See a parish president make some news here:

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Stuart H. Smith is an attorney based in New Orleans fighting major oil companies and other polluters.
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