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'A Knife In The Back': Boehner Faces Bipartisan Fury After Punting Sandy Aid

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: Boehner, Hurricane Sandy, congress, ethics, republicans, democrats, americans, abuse, dishonesty )

- 1969 days ago -
House Speaker John Boehner is facing a bipartisan firestorm over his decision not to vote on Hurricane Sandy relief before the 112th Congress adjourns, creating a new crisis for Republican leadership just hours after the end of the "fiscal cliff."

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Carrie B (306)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 4:04 pm
Why is anyone surprised? Remember the GOP wants to get rid of FEMA altogether.

Thomas P (280)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 4:12 pm
Noted...thanks Carrie. Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor are proving themselves to be political hacks, to be sure, but this is just an unconscionable blow to all those affected by hurricane Sandy. It should be noted that this is all at the behest of the Koch brothers, who don't feel that hurricane Sandy is the responsibility of the taxpayers. Just think if those of us who live in NY had felt that way about hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma, or the scores of other hurricanes that happen. This is really an outrage and will only unite democrats and republicans against the crazies on the extreme right (i.e. the gross majority of teabaggers).

Kit B (276)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 4:21 pm

We are either a nation of people or we or not. People take care of each other, we have seen the very dramatic efforts of communities that faced a live and death struggle from hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, droughts, a few earthquakes and even back in 1981 from the effects of a volcano. That does require big money the kind of money that only the Federal government can bring to a situation of catastrophic consequence. When people or politicians become so obsessed about a singular idea and forget their only duty is to the people, that we are all one people, then we have problems much worse than a budget.

Thomas is correct they are political hacks -

Kit B (276)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 4:23 pm

**life and death***

. (0)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 5:26 pm
Totally despicable ......and it just keeps getting worse

Carol H (229)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 5:53 pm
fire Boehner!!!

John B (185)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 6:04 pm
Thanks Carrie for the link to the article by Henry Decker. The House has passed 10 other relief bills but not for the victims of Sandy and that just shows that the GOP leadership consists of nothing but amateurs pretending to be political leaders. The video clip of Rep Charles Rangle was great. Read, viewed and noted.

Mitchell D (87)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 6:04 pm
Kit and thomas are on point. And Kit's comment about obsession around a singular idea echoes my comment, of yesterday, I think it was, that the GOP can not govern, as they are so intenselty focused on their religious, anti-women, and feeding the rich agendas.

Jason S (50)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 6:55 pm
Sad how inhuman the world become, Good posting, thanks

Suzanne L (99)
Wednesday January 2, 2013, 7:17 pm
I'm hoping that the next time voters go to the polls they will remember this. "Cutting spending" sounds good in the abstract, but now people can see what it really means. Those people need and deserve help.

Michael Carney (217)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 12:11 am
This guy is an embarrassment, to every human being on the face of the Earth...How is he still there? I hope the people who vote for him, are proud of him, today...

Giana P (398)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 12:16 am
How could someone be so unfeeling and uncaring, where is humanity?

donnaa D (14)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 6:20 am
help is really needed here

Gloria p (304)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 6:27 am
New England conservatives who has your back?

Karen Martinez (17)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 6:51 am
Ok, we pay taxes for what reason? I guess it isn't to help us out in case of a natural disaster. Must be to ensure the awesome health insurance for life that we supply to members of congress, not to mention their $900.00 raise. Heaven forbid that we help people whose homes and businesses have been destroyed.

Laurie Greenberg (11)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 7:41 am
Boehner would push his whole family over a cliff for money!

Arielle S (313)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 8:13 am
Governor Christie is a big man with a big anger and justly so. He now knows what it's like to have to deal with that "palace intrigue" - a good man to tell it like it is.

Robert B (60)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 8:45 am
There is something REALLY, REALLY WRONG when we spend more on the military than the next 10 nations combined, yet can't seem to help our own citizens in the aftermath of the WORST Storm to hit the Northeast. It's time to cut the cord of the lobbying industry and break it's stranglehold on our Government, so it can DO IT'S JOB for a change.

Dave Seitz (0)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 12:21 pm

The bill was loaded with PORK!!!!!!!!!!!!

Carrie B (306)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 12:32 pm
At least they didn't vote their own raise in yet, but they will and that is truly an abomination. Right now our illustrious house members make $174,000 a year. they will give themselves a pay raise which will bring their salaries to $174,900 a year.

Lets' take a moment to do a little math. The 2013 congressional calendar shows they will be working a whopping 126 days! Wow, isn't that a grueling schedule? Now, at present the average hourly wage in the US is $23.63. That's the average - think about the majority of people making much less than that.

Now just suppose we pay congress $23.63 an hour for 126 8 hour days. That would be $23,819 a year per member. Meaning would be saving $151,081 per member. You can finish this little math game without much effort.

I was being conservative with their present salaries. In actuality they receive much more.


As of January 2011, the annual salary for most United States senators was $174,000, a number that has been the same since January 1, 2009, according to the Congressional Research Service. The pay rate is frozen for 2011 and 2012, though it is possible the salary will increase after 2012. From January 2003 to January 2011, senators saw an increase of $19,300 in annual pay. The president pro tempore of the Senate and the majority and minority leaders for the Senate received an annual salary of $193,400 as of January 2011 -- an increase of $21,500 from January 2003 to January 2011.

Tax Deductions and Benefits
Members of the United States senate may deduct up to $3,000 annually for living expenses while away from their home states as of January 2011. In addition to their annual salaries, United States senators may enroll in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program and select a health plan if they choose. They may also enroll in the Federal Employees Group Life Insurance Program, under which they pay a fee dependent on how much coverage they select. Senators must contribute to Social Security, and they can choose among different retirement programs under the Civil Service Retirement System and the Federal Employees Retirement System.

Senators receive an administrative and clerical allowance, a legislative assistance allowance and an official office expense allowance. All three of these allowances are combined in the Senator's Official Personnel and Office Expense Account (SOPOEA). The total amount depends on the senator's state population, but the average amount was $3,343,867 as of January 2011. This money goes to pay for office expenses, legislative assistants and other aspects pertaining to official Senate business. Senators are given additional allowances for office space in their home states, mobile office space, and furniture, furnishings and office equipment in both their Washington, D.C., offices and the offices in their home states.


United States senators are restricted in the amount of money they can make as outside income while serving in the Senate. As of January 2011, senators were limited to 15 percent of their base annual salary as outside income. Senators may not receive compensation for certain activities, including allowing a corporation, firm, partnership or association to use their names or practicing any profession that involves a fiduciary relationship, meaning holding assets for an individual or company, without approval of the Senate Select Committee on Ethics. Senators have been prohibited from receiving honoraria, monetary compensation for volunteer services or other services that are typically free, since Aug. 14, 1991.

The salaries of senators are identical those of members of the House of Representatives. The last year in which senators and members of the House of Representatives did not have the same salary was 1991, when members of the House earned $125,100 per year and senators made $101,900.


Three members of both the Senate and the House of Representative earn more than the rest of their colleagues. A salary of $193,400 per year is paid to those senators and representatives who serve as the Senate majority and minority leaders, the majority and minority leaders of the House of Representatives, and as the president pro tempore of the Senate. The speaker of the House of Representatives is the highest-paid member of Congress, with an annual salary of $223,500."

Read more: The Average Salary of a United States Representative |


Claudia O (73)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 1:03 pm
Help people when they are down? That is not the American way. WHAT!!!!!!!!!

Louise D (44)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 1:11 pm
John Boehner aka the Orange Overlord and is sometimes confused with getting an erection on a toilet - that would be a john boner but then that is what happens when guys abuse viagra. Boehner.has demonstrated multiple times how relentlessly stupid he is and this is just another example of it. Just when he is not acting like a bell end he goes back to form, why should it not be expected? Bush screwed New Orleans like a drunken prom date so why shouldn't John Boehner do it after Hurricane Sandy, hell he would do it if there was a Hurricane Spongebob, Patrick, Squidward and Mr Crabs too.

BG Callahan (0)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 2:14 pm
Thank you, Carrie for the purty green star. Mr. Seitz, please list some of the more egregious "pork" in the bill. "One persons food is another person's poison". One persons justifiable assistance is another persons pork.

Diane O (194)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 3:06 pm
Republicans could not vote on a bill laden with pork that was not going to the Sandy victims. Get the pork out of it and the bill will pass.

Dianna M (16)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 3:44 pm
Sorry, Thomas P., can’t send you another green star this week.

Why is anyone surprised? After Joplin, MO, was destroyed by tornadoes in 2011, not only did Eric Cantor say that “If there is support for a supplemental, it would be accompanied by support for having pay-fors to that supplemental” but we also found out that the NOAA weather satellite system was facing funding cuts in Congress, along with the system that predicts tsunamis. Can’t have early warning systems saving lives . . . ?

Cantor even opposed earthquake disaster relief for his own district. “Obviously, the problem is that people in Virginia don’t have earthquake insurance.” From ThinkProgress: As the Insurance Information Institute notes, “earthquakes are not covered under standard U.S. homeowners or business insurance policies, although supplemental coverage is usually available.” So, for Cantor, the problem here is that Virginians didn’t have the foresight to predict an exceedingly rare natural disaster and pay out of their own pocket in advance.

Lois Jordan (63)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 5:02 pm
Noted. Thanks, Carrie. I also much appreciated your breakdown of the congressional salaries. Good info!

Dianna M (16)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 5:18 pm
Hey, this is a bit off-topic, but I just realized something--today was the swearing-in for the 113th Congress. Do you suppose all members of the House made it this time?

James Maynard (84)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 8:59 pm
Mr. Boehner is an inept, incompetent leader who
should seek the advice of Mrs. Pelosi.

Past Member (0)
Thursday January 3, 2013, 9:04 pm
Is Diane criticizing her own party? Reagan says that's a no no. lol They probably put it in so they could have a reason not to help people in need. That's more like it.

"However, as it turns out, the pork portions of the Senate bill were not earmarked to benefit Democratic members of the upper chamber of Congress. And you may be quite surprised to discover where that money is actually headed once the rich Senate legislation is passed by the House.

A review of the mark-up of the Senate bill reveals that all that extra, non-Sandy related cash is actually set to provide billions for “storm events that occurred in 2012 along the Gulf Coast and Atlantic Coast within the boundaries of the North Atlantic and Mississippi Valley divisions of the Corps that were affected by Hurricanes Sandy and Isaac.”

Here’s the mark-up:

Diane O (194)
Friday January 4, 2013, 2:52 am
Jason, I'm more than capable of criticizing my own party.

James, Nancy "Scissorhands" Pelosi is a certified loon. Her age is becoming more and more obvious and she needs to step down and retire to her vineyard.

Past Member (0)
Friday January 4, 2013, 9:45 am
Did you know what the pork was? I doubt fox told you. Nancy is fine. She gets things done that help "the people". Remember them?

Audrey B (0)
Friday January 4, 2013, 10:50 am
How in the world did Boehner get re-elected yesterday? Is there not anyone else that can do the job? I was hoping to get rid of Boehner & Polosi both of them would sell out the United States in a minute for money. I also think that people who are over a million should not be entitled to part take Social Security & Medicare.

I hope everyone remembers how well Christy is doing his job, and that he is loud enough to be heard. Hopefully he will run in 2016. He will get our Country back on its feet. Congress watch out, I am sure the fringe benefits will be cut.

I think Congress should be downsized so we stop spending so much in salaries and those wonderful benefits they receive for a part time job. Even Obamacare is not good enough for them and their families, they are excempt from part taking it, must be nice. Why do we have 2 standards once Obamacare starts, If its good enough for us, but not for Congress? Whats with that?

Time to clean house and do some downsizing in Congress and White House expenses. How many vacations a year should the President be allowed to take on the Citizens taxes? All the security hours, chefs, dog trainer, food & louging expenses, transportation expenses and ect? While our Country is in it own fiinancial CRISIS, also stop Foreign Aid and Fix Us.

Elizabeth M (65)
Friday January 4, 2013, 11:57 am
Yes, I agree with Audrey B. How in heavens name did Boehner get enough votes to get back in????
I am praying that they start helping the Sandy victims, and it is my personal feeling that the these people should not have to wait until the 15th.

Past Member (0)
Friday January 4, 2013, 12:07 pm
The tea baggers are using Boner as their curtain,

Did every one see this video!!!?

Past Member (0)
Friday January 4, 2013, 2:31 pm
Thursday was the first day of the 113th Congress

In the House, John Boehner was narrowly elected to his second term as Speaker - surviving a revolt by a handful of Tea Party Republicans. But the action is in the Senate, where the battle for filibuster reform is heating up. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid brought the Senate into session yesterday, then immediately recessed it until later this month, keeping alive the option to reform the filibuster in a few weeks with a simple majority vote. That gives time for Senators Jeff Merkley and Tom Udall to whip up support for their plan to bring back the talking filibuster, which will force Senators to actually stand on the floor and talk the entire time they wish to filibuster.

Meanwhile, a group of bipartisan Senators led by John McCain are trying to kill filibuster reform, with a watered down version that will actually make the problem even worse. That's because Republicans know there filibustering over the last few years has meant big money for their corporate donors. As the Public Campaign Action Fund found, huge money from corporate America, including Big Oil and Wall Street, is fueling the filibusters to make sure their tax rates stay low, their subsidies keep flowing, and that regulations are kept to a minimum. In other words, the filibuster is very profitable for Corporate America, which is why Republicans are desperately trying to keep it.

But if Democrats want any chance at taking back the House of Representatives in two years, then its critical they take up the Merkley-Udall plan, and reform the filibuster to finally get some good, progressive legislation passed out of the upper chamber. Stay tuned.


Fascism is serious, destructive business. The constitution says that this is our country and it needs a remodel.
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