President Barack Obama is urging House Republicans to bring the $60.4 billion Sandy relief package to the floor for a vote before the current Congress adjourns Thursday.
The president joined lawmakers from New Jersey and the tri-state area Wednesday who have been issuing statements criticizing the U.S. House of Representatives after its Republican leadership prevented an aid package bill from hitting the floor for a vote.
“When tragedy strikes, Americans come together to support those in need. I urge Republicans in the House of Representatives to do the same, bring this important request to a vote today, and pass it without delay for our fellow Americans,” the president said.
“It has only been two months since Hurricane Sandy devastated communities across New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut as well as other eastern states. Our citizens are still trying to put their lives back together. Our states are still trying to rebuild vital infrastructure. And so, last month, working closely with the governors of the affected states, I sent Congress an urgent request to support their efforts to rebuild and recover,” he said.
“The Senate passed this request with bipartisan support. But the House of Representatives has refused to act, even as there are families and communities who still need our help to rebuild in the months and years ahead, and who also still need immediate support with the bulk of winter still in front of us,” the statement reads.
The package is currently set to die on the Senate floor Thursday at noon.
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"Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto, a Hudson County Democrat, is balking. He claimed Tuesday that members of his caucus are divided over the measure and that his house is in no real rush – besides, even if enacted this year, the reforms would not take effect until 2017, he said. And with the growing belief that Christie could skip town to run for president, some Democrats are not eager to give him another talking point for his résumé. Christie’s plans to stump for Republican candidates in New Hampshire later Thursday only fuel that suspicion." - columnist Charles Stile- The Bergen Record
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