President Bush's Federal Emergency Management Chief has resigned amid ongoing criticism of the government's initial response to Hurricane Katrina.
FEMA director Michael Brown had already been relieved of his duties managing the massive relief effort along the U.S. Gulf Coast, and returned to Washington to oversee FEMA operations nationwide. Mr. Brown has drawn sharp criticism for his agency's response, with critics arguing his decisions made the disaster worse. President Bush had earlier praised him for, in his words, "doing a heck of a job." As Mr. Bush toured New Orleans earlier today, he again defended his administration's response to the hurricane. He said it is "preposterous" to claim the Iraq war meant there weren't enough troops available to help victims of the disaster. In the aftermath of Katrina, Mr. Bush's approval ratings in public opinion polls have dropped to the lowest level of his presidency.