Voices in the News

A sound montage of some of the voices in this past week's news, including Tessa DaSilva, fire evacuee in southern California; Rachel Liang, spokeswoman for San Diego Gas and Electric; Petty Officer Daniel Brautigam, Navy volunteer at Qualcomm Stadium; Elizabeth Simpson, evacuee staying at Qualcomm; Rep. David Obey (D-WI); Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senate minority leader; Condoleezza Rice, Secretary of State; Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

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LIANE HANSEN, host:

From NPR News, this is WEEKEND EDITION. I'm Liane Hansen.

And these were some of the voices in the news this past week.

Ms. TESSA DaSILVA (Evacuee): Five a.m. in the morning, mommy had to come down here. It looks like up there on that hill, the fire - they were just coming down on us. There was the red ball in the sky, and then we came back. And then, there were 40-foot flames just booming down that mountain. I think that this is the scariest moment of my life.

Ms. RACHEL LIANG (Spokeswoman, San Diego Gas and Electric): Every single field personnel that we have is out there right now - every single one. So they're working in shifts and they're going to be until this thing is over.

Petty Officer DANIEL BRAUTIGAM (Navy Volunteer, Qualcomm Stadium): The effort here is a completely different story than what I saw in Katrina. Here, you have complete organization. You have a community coming together, getting things done, helping people out.

Ms. ELIZABETH SIMPSON (Evacuee): Keep putting one foot in front of the other. I mean, okay, so I look really calm. But if you'd notice, I'm wearing two different shoes. Okay. So, yeah, I was calm evacuating the house. But exactly how calm it was, I don't think it was quite that calm.

President GEORGE W. BUSH: But most importantly, I want the people of Southern California to know that Americans all across this land care deeply about them. We're concerned about their safety. We're concerned about their property. And we offer our prayers.

Representative DAVID OBEY (Democrat, Wisconsin): He thinks he can govern this country with one-third plus one, which is enough to sustain any veto, and he thinks that that he could run the country with an, in essence, a minority government. And he has an advantage in that so long as he's got enough lemmings in the Congress to follow him over the cliff.

Senator MITCH McCONNELL (Republican, Kentucky; Senate Minority Leader): I think there is substantial feeling in my conference that we ought to hold these discretionary accounts to the overall amount that the president requested in order to show some willingness to restrain spending.

Secretary CONDOLEEZZA RICE (U.S. Department of State): We have many, many hundreds of documents, hundreds of reports of corruption. We investigate them all. But nothing is going to be gained by speaking prematurely about allegations without fully investigating them.

Representative HENRY WAXMAN (Democrat, California; Chairman, Committee on Oversight and Government Reform): Well, this is a big deal. This is the prime minister of the country.

Sec. RICE: Yes. I agree with you. It's a big deal.

Rep. WAXMAN: It's his country, where his government that we're propping up with the lives of our soldiers and the billions of dollars of our taxpayers' money.

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