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Congress Ends Session Without Passing Hurricane Sandy Aid

Submitted by on January 2, 2013 – 4:02 pmNo Comment
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New York lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are furious today, as the House of Representatives concluded their session without even voting on an aid package for the victims of Superstorm Sandy. The Republican house leadership, who are responsible for scheduling and calling votes, have not explained the decision.

Rep. Peter King (R-NY) called the move “absolutely inexcusable, absolutely indefensible” during comments on the House floor. Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY) added that it was an “absolutely disgrace,” pinning the blame squarely on Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner.

A spokesman for Boehner said he was committed to having a vote on the measure this month.

The Senate had already passed a $60 billion measure to aid victims of the storm that ravaged the northeast this past October. The House was considering a smaller, $27 billion package.

It’s possible that Boehner did not want to pass more spending this term. The House finally hammered out a fiscal cliff deal late last night that left neither side particularly happy. Conservatives have lashed out at Boehner for passing a deal that raises taxes and does not cut spending as much as they want; and his inability to rally his party for so long has left the Speaker’s reputation severely battered, and his re-election in doubt.

Well, if history is any indicator, Jon Stewart will be pretty furious about New Yorkers in need being denied aid for political reasons, and he’ll get to work whipping up public sentiment.

What do you think? Should the House have hammered out a deal for Sandy relief?

[via CNBC]

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