You are here

Biloxi (Mississippi) Sun Herald: 'Mr. Insurance' takes colleagues from Congress on a tour of the crime scene

If what has been done to homeowners after Hurricane Katrina is criminal, then Pass Christian and Bay St. Louis would easily qualify as crime scenes.


It was into those communities that Coast Congressman Gene Taylor led more than a dozen of his congressional colleagues this week, including the most powerful of them all - Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

Pelosi, who calls Taylor 'Mr. Insurance,' said that next month the House of Representatives will consider Taylor's legislation expanding the National Flood Insurance Program into a multi-peril insurance plan for property owners who cannot obtain coverage in the private market.

That is heartening.

As was this comment from one of Pelosi's key political lieutenants, House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn: 'I want you all to know that our commitment to you is as genuine as anything we've ever undertaken. And we will never relent.'

It will require a relentless effort in Congress to overcome the objections of some insurance companies to expanding federal coverage.

Fortunately, Pelosi understands that.

'We're up against a mighty force,' she said of the lobbying efforts of the insurance industry. 'But we have something on our side - we are right.'

Monday's visit by such an influential congressional delegation to Hancock and Harrison counties was much appreciated.

Also to be appreciated was the response by local residents, hundreds of whom went out of their way to inform representatives of distant legislative districts of the challenges that remain so long after Katrina.