Salazar Asks President To Fire FEMA Director Michael Brown

Bush Praises Brown, Saying He's Done 'Heck Of A Job'

At least one member of Colorado's congressional delegation is calling for the ouster of federal disaster official Michael Brown.

Democratic Sen. Ken Salazar said Brown had 36 hours notice of the devastation Hurricane Katrina could cause, but waited until five hours after the storm made landfall before asking his boss to send rescue support workers.

Salazar is asking President George W. Bush to fire Brown, blaming the director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency for inexcusable inaction before the storm -- and an ineffective response later.

The freshman senator even went so far as to blame the suspected deaths of "thousands of people" on FEMA's failure to do something ahead of time.

Brown served nine years as a board member of the Aurora-based International Arabian Horse Association before joining FEMA. The secretary of that association told ABC NEWS that it asked him to resign in 2001.

And Bush has said Brown is doing "a heck of a job" in the wake of the storm. There's no indication he'll ask for Brown's resignation.

Brown was nominated to the FEMA at the suggestion of former FEMA head, Joe M. Allbaugh, who was his college friend and who now consults for private companies that bid for government contracts for disaster relief.

Allbaugh told ABC NEWS that Brown had worked under him at FEMA for two years and that he had learned the system and was his logical successor.

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