Asked for clarification today, Romney spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg said the GOP nominee wasn't implying he would get rid of FEMA
, but rather that he simply wants states to play a greater role in disaster response.
"Gov. Romney believes that states should be in charge of emergency management in responding to storms and other natural disasters in their jurisdictions," Henneberg said. "As the first responders, states are in the best position to aid affected individuals and communities, and to direct resources and assistance to where they are needed most. This includes help from the federal government and FEMA."
Romney has proposed a budget that includes across-the-board cuts on federal programs, with the exception of defense and entitlement programs, as a way of curbing the growing federal deficit. But he has not said specifically where those cuts would be. Asked if FEMA's budget could be on the list for potential cuts, Henneberg did not comment.