Saturday, February 03, 2007

O'Connell the "Terrorism Expert" Doesn't Know Much

Jay Jochnowitz at Capitol Confidential did a little Fact Check of O'Connell's terrorism mailing...

"The opening line of Maureen O’Connell’s campaign flyer, which casts her as someone “with homeland security experience,” might leave you wondering if you’d missed some big news. The mailer states that “The Department of Homeland Security has raised New York’s threat level to “Orange” — indicating a “high risk of terrorist attack.”

Turns out, it’s about one-third accurate.

New York’s threat level isn’t orange. It’s yellow. And it’s set by the state Office of Homeland Security, not the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

If the flyer meant to talk about New York City, the Big Apple is indeed at “orange,” but the implication that this is some new development isn’t so. The city, according to the state Office of Homeland Security, has been at that level since shortly after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Nor is the city’s threat level set by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security or, for that matter, the state office; it’s done by the NYPD and the city’s Office of Emergency Management, according to the state.

Other than that, the sentence is fine: orange does indicate “a high risk of terrorist attack.”

If she doesn't even know the current threat level or who sets it, that doesn't reflect too well on her "experience."
Granted, the flier was written by a copy writer but O'Connell does check her stuff before it goes out. She approved it.

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