The U.S. Senate approved a $50.5 billion aid package that will deliver federal disaster relief funds to states devastated by Superstorm Sandy.
New Jersey and other states are poised to receive tens of billions in aid after Senate lawmakers approved the package by a 62-36 vote. The Monday evening vote came about two weeks after members of the House of Representatives signed off on the package.
The package needed 60 votes to clear the Senate and now heads to the desk of President Barack Obama.
Gov. Chris Christie issued a joint statement along with New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy following the vote.
"Our genuine thanks and gratitude goes out to the U.S. Senate for its thoughtful consideration and passage of the Hurricane Sandy disaster relief package. Despite the difficult path in getting to this moment, the Senate membership clearly recognized early on the urgency and necessity of approving the full aid package and its importance in rebuilding our battered infrastructure and getting our millions of affected residents back on their feet as quickly as possible," the statement reads.
"To all Americans, we are grateful for their willingness to come to our aid as we take on the monumental task of rebuilding and we pledge to do the same should our fellow citizens find themselves facing unexpected and harsh devastation," it said. "We also make special note of the tenacious efforts of our respective Congressional delegations in steering the Sandy aid package through their respective houses and bringing this aid home to their people."
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"Gov. Chris Christie says he won’t campaign for the Republican gubernatorial candidate in New York because the cause is hopeless: Gov. Andrew Cuomo is ahead by more than 30 points. But he will campaign in New Hampshire, over and over, where the Republican is also trailing by more than 30 points. What’s the reason? It may be that New Hampshire holds the nation’s first presidential primary. It may be that he doesn’t want to mess with Cuomo, who knows where the skeletons are buried at the Port Authority. But one thing is certain: Gov. Straight Talk is spinning again. And it seems to be habit-forming." - columnist Tom Moran- Star-Ledger
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