http://www.cnsnews.com/ Media, Democrats Exaggerate Warning of Levee Breaches By Jeff Johnson CNSNews.com Senior Staff Writer March 03, 2006 EXCERPT (CNSNews.com) - Critics of the Bush administration have promoted video of an Aug. 28, 2005, teleconference between emergency management officials and the president as proof that the White House was warned that levees around New Orleans would likely fail against Hurricane Katrina. But a closer examination of the recording and transcript shows no mention that the Crescent City's levees would be breached. The Associated Press (AP) broke the story on Wednesday, claiming that "federal disaster officials warned President Bush and his homeland security chief before Hurricane Katrina struck that the storm could breach levees." The next day, Media Matters for America (MMFA), a liberal advocacy group that criticizes news outlets for their alleged conservative bias, took two of the country's largest newspapers to task for their coverage of the video. MMFA declared as fact that, "on the day before Hurricane Katrina made landfall, President Bush was warned - and expressed concern - over the possibility that the levees in New Orleans would be breached by the storm." The Democratic National Committee (DNC) joined the chorus of Bush critics later Thursday, claiming that, "During the briefing, National Hurricane Center Director Max Mayfield told the President that the integrity of the levees was 'a very, very grave concern,' which the President appears to have ignored." The "grave concern" quote appears to have been taken from the Aug. 29 transcript of the meeting. "I don't think any model can tell you with any confidence right now whether the levees will be topped, or not," Mayfield is quoted as saying. "But, that's obviously a very, very grave concern." Further comparison of the video to the transcript by Cybercast News Service indicates that Mayfield's quote, which was not transcribed accurately, came from a discussion of the possibility that water from Katrina's storm surge might flow over the tops of the levees, not that the levees might fail.