New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu (D-La.) praised Gov. Nikki Haley (R-S.C.) as courageous and said Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump would fit in “real good” with former Louisiana governors Huey Long and Edwin Edwards since he’s spicing up the 2016 presidential race.
Given that Louisiana is well known for its colorful politicians, Landrieu was asked how Donald Trump compares with the state’s ex-governors.
“Donald Trump would fit in real good with Huey Long and with Edwin Edwards. I mean, you know, one of the things that we have done in Louisiana is kind of add some color to the word ‘colorful,’ and no matter what you think about The Donald, you got to say he’s spicing it up,” Landrieu said at the National Press Club.
“He’d fit real good on the McIlhenny farm where they make Tabasco sauce – go right with that red hat. So tell him to come on down to Louisiana, we’d love to see him,” he added, referring to Trump’s red “Make America Great Again” hat.
Landrieu also said he is looking forward to Haley’s upcoming speech at the National Press Club.
“I thought she did something really courageous in South Carolina and I hope that elected officials across the south, Republican and Democrat, put that behind us and look forward and do it in a way that makes the south really strong,” he said, referring to Haley’s support of taking down the Confederate flag on the statehouse grounds.
Landrieu told the audience the south has a lot to offer the country.
“We actually think that, without getting into competition with our folks from the northeast or the west, that we could actually lead the nation but we’ve got to put down this issue of race. We’ve got to make sure that everybody in this country feels included,” he said. “I’m really just thankful to her for leading that effort and look forward to partnering with her and all of our friends, our brothers and sisters across the south, to talk about what the new south looks like for the rest of the country.”
Landrieu was also asked if New Orleans would be able to withstand another hurricane as strong as Katrina.
“The levies broke. This was not a manmade. This was not a natural disaster. This was a manmade disaster. If a category five rolling in at 12 miles per hour of speed that has winds over 150 miles an hour hits any city in America, you should hope that you will have gone by then,” he said.
“I think Hurricane Sandy demonstrated to us that we have many, many vulnerable cities, and guess what? On the scale, New Orleans isn’t even on the top. I think Miami’s number one; I think Charleston is up there; New York is up there and so I have said many, many times in defense of our great city that has had ridiculous things said about it, by the way, by seemingly educated people, that that storm did not hit us because we were bad people,” he added.
In terms of hurricane protection, Landrieu said the city is much safer now than it was before Katrina.
“We have spent $14.6 billion federal dollars on fortifying the levies to what they call category three standards and if another event came in just like this one, at the same speed and at the same time, we have really good reason to believe that we would be fine,” he said.