The Daily Nightly has a pre-released exerpts of Bush’s speech tonight, here.
ThinkProgress has the right wing’s talking points for the speech here. Here’s the first pre-speech criticism from the Newswires:
Former Democratic Whip David Bonior’s Statement on President Bush’s Plans to Lock Poverty into Gulf Coast’s Recovery
WASHINGTON, Sept. 15 /U.S. Newswire/ — Following is a statement from former Democratic Whip David Bonior:
“Whatever apologies and promises the President makes publicly tonight, we know to whom he’s pledged his allegiance behind closed doors: Big business.
“While first responders, volunteers, and Americans donating money and supplies continued to stand in the gap between natural disaster and slow government response, President Bush moved swiftly last week to suspend the application of the Davis-Bacon Act, the federal law that sets a minimum pay scale for workers on federal contracts by requiring employers to pay the prevailing or average wage in the region. Enacted during the Depression era, the Act was designed to protect workers in desperate need of employment from profiteering contractors who could take advantage of their vulnerability.
“Slashing pay for painters, truck drivers and laborers by shelving Davis-Bacon is more likely to translate into higher contractor profits — a boon for the Halliburtons of this world – – than lower construction costs.
“Last week’s action is a sign of things to come. The Bush administration is forcefully blazing a narrow and self-interested ideological trail, seemingly indifferent to the millions of Americans teetering on the bring of economic, familial and societal collapse. Having a decent job that pays a living wage is sure to be one of the most instrumental factors in the resurgence of the Gulf Coast community. Yet, the most vulnerable Americans’ pressing needs and their President’s priorities are at embarrassingly irreconcilable odds.
“President Bush’s recovery plans constitute nothing less than a shameful, government-sponsored race-to-the-bottom for the working families of the Gulf Coast.
Do we really want to lock poverty into the recovery? Americans have answered that question by making sacrifices and caring for those affected by the hurricane a top priority. And just like those left behind in New Orleans, we’re still waiting for the President to do the same.