GOP Says Hold Your Horses On Disaster Relief


The Republicans are making good on their promise not to provide any more aid to victims of natural disasters without ensuring there are equal cuts to spending to balance the expenditure.  According to the New York Times, the Democratic effort to fast track a straight relief bill, which would help replenish the FEMA coffers that have been emptied by this summer’s string of tornadoes, floods, hurricanes and earthquakes, has been blocked by the Senate Republicans.

The administration was asking for an additional $500 million in a stand alone vote with no strings attached to ensure the relief fund did not run out of money before September 30th. But the funding was denied by Republicans, who said they would instead add the request into a bill that would provide stop gap funds to keep the full government running past the end of the month, meaning those effected by disaster will only get the aid if the rest of the bill is passed.

The stand alone fast track bill was “defeated” 53-33, needing 60 votes to pass due to filibuster rules.  It’s a sad day in government when people who have lost everything in natural disasters have to worry about whether or not aid money runs out because a bill to provide more only had 20 more votes for it than against it.

After a second try, a bill finally did pass on a 61 to 38 vote, with a group of Republicans voting yes who had abstained before — senators who had states who were suffering.  The bill will now go to the House, where it could be stalled by the Republican majority.


Related Stories:

Cantor: No Earthquake Aid Without Spending Cuts

A Firsthand Look At Irene As Vermont Faces New Flash Flood Watch (VIDEO)

Cantor: No Disaster Relief For Tornado Victims Without Cuts

Photo credit: Eje Gustafsson, via wikimedia commons


Carole R.
Carole R6 years ago

Sad, isn't it? Thanks for the post.

Leslie S.
Leslie S.6 years ago

It will be interesting to see how much aid goes overseas when the next big disaster hits elsewhere. How will we look when other countries are generous and we have to say, "sorry, we have to cut some things first" or will we say, "sure, we can help you because the funds for foreign aid are still here, saved just for you" and if that's the case, how about taking the money now from one pocket and putting it in another? Although I'm guessing we shouldn't really have money to help overseas either, but what about our "reputation" for generosity, do we want to admit we're completely broke, or will we borrow money to help them?

Lynne B.
Lynne Buckley6 years ago

I hope people remember things like this when it's election time. Unless you're rich, the Republicans don't care whether you're left homeless, broke or sick. You're worthless to them. Their attitude to those affected sums them up: soulless.

Dianne Robertson
Dianne Robertson6 years ago

Republicans ARE FOOLS to continue this course.Between JOBS RALLYS the PRESIDENT should begin making HUMANITARIAN VISITS ---COMPLETE WITH CAMERAS and entourage to show us what a mess there is and WHAT THE REPUBLICANS WON"T LET HIM FIX! Maybe he should bring produce from Michelle's garden like Martha Washington did to VALLEY FORGE when the government wouldn't send supplies in the winter.

Norma V.
Norma Villarreal6 years ago

No relief in sight....

Patrick F.
Patrick f6 years ago

This inhuman suggestion and Ron Paul's blunderous comment about just letting people without insurance die is a wake up call. If you can't see that the Republican party's priority is NOT the people of the U.S. then you deserve Perry or Romney as POTUS.

Welcome to 4 more years of unemployment, cuts to social programs, less than living wages, food stamps(if they don't cut that too), no disaster relief, all while the ultra rich get coddled by the government they purchased.

Hartson Doak
Hartson Doak6 years ago

This has to be made very public just before the elections. Pounded on and on that the Repubs are insane. They can not see past their masters leash.

mary l.
mary l6 years ago

If Obama would quit giving money to foreign countries everytime there is a disaster then there would be money her at home.

Marie W.
Marie W6 years ago

So very Christian- no help for those in need. Jesus asking for money to save??

Alice H.
Alice H6 years ago

The very point of the federal government is to provide for the welfare of the people -- not just the welfare of the rich, or the corporations, but all of us.