BELMAR – Gov. Chris Christie called on federal lawmakers to stop “bickering” and approve a $60.4 billion request for aid by three states following the devastation of Superstorm Sandy.
The governor spoke at a town hall event in Belmar. It’s the first town hall Christie’s held since before Sandy slammed into the Jersey coast and delivered a devastating blow to the state. He called on Congress to act before New Year's on the aid bill request for disaster relief.
“While I know they are consumed with fighting and bickering with each other … don’t forget that people are suffering,” he said. “They can return to bickering as soon as they get done with the business that is the first responsibility of government.”
The governor told the packed house in Belmar that government’s first responsibility is to protect people and their property.
Christie said Congress should put their partisan fights aside and work on getting New Jersey, New York and Connecticut “back to [being] whole.”
Christie said a large part of rebuilding in the state will be dependent on the federal government, arguing officials in storm-tattered states were careful of their review in requests for aid.
“I understand that they have to review it and discuss it and debate it,” he said, adding, “We didn’t just throw a number up against the wall.”
Christie made the comments on the heels of news reports that some U.S. Senate Republicans are seeking to slash the $60.4 billion aid request and proposed funding only $23.8 billion in immediate disaster relief, according to published reports.
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"This is my first Mark Smith event. There have been a lot of changes in Hudson County over the last year and a half, and the most important change that has happened is that there really is unity. For the first time, we really are working together. Despite political differences. Mark and I have worked very hard to repair that. I'm really happy to be here in support of him, because I recognize that when you work together, politics becomes secondary and you really have time to focus on government, which is the most important thing." - Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop- PolitickerNJ.com
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