The response to huricane Andrew was the same as the current one, the states are responsible for caring for thier own citizens and when a crisis occurs and they do not have the resources they then request the help of the federal gov by declaring an emergency. After hurricane Andrew the gov of Florida waited 3 days to declare an emergency, --"WE NEED HELP," a front-page Miami Herald headline screamed four days after Andrew hit.--
I haven't heard personally what the timeline for the gov of La for declaring an emergency, I've read reports that an emergency was never declared. Last summer Gov Bush declared an emergency two days before a hurricane even hit Florida which set the response in motion and Florida was receiving aid the second that the storm cleared out. I was once a roommate with a guy who's father was a New Orleans cop and all he talked about was corruption in the system down there. Also the levee's have been an issue for years, Bush wasn't the first president to shoot down additional funding..