For hurricanes in the past, the government has passed relief bills quickly to aid the victims; for Hurricane Katrina, it took ten days, for Hurricane Andrew, 31 days. So, why has 67 days passed since Hurricane Sandy hit land and nothing been done? Speaker Boehner abruptly pulled a bill to help Hurricane Sandy victims, getting a brash response from Gov. Chris Christie who stated he was “disappointed and disgusted” at the politics involved. New York Republican Congressman and Chairman of the Homeland Security Committee Peter King talks to John and Brooke about getting his constituents the help they need and deserve.
Representative King showed aggression and anger while responding to Speaker Boehner’s disregard for Sandy victims. He says, “When it comes to fighting for my constituents, I had an obligation to do it and the danger was this wasn’t just a delay of one day. What I was concerned about was it being pushed over into the new congress- this could delay it for months, that’s why the speaker yesterday agreed to expedite this and get it done. That was the most significant thing.”
The expedited bill involves $60 billion in relief aid. $9 billion will be infused into flood insurance and once the bill is decided on the first day of voting on January 15th, the remaining $51 billion will fall into place.
As for Representative Darrell Issa’s accusation that the bill is filled with pork, King says, “I wish Darrell Issa had looked into that before he went public and said that my constituents should not get their homes built, should not have the waste management plants rebuild, the Governor Christie should not be given the opportunity to rebuild New Jersey and Governor Cuomo New York.” Part of what took this bill so long to reach this point is all the damage having to be accounted for. He says, “Every dollar that Governor Christie, Governor Cuomo and Mayor Bloomberg requested has been documented, the speaker will tell you that, the majority leader will tell you that. There is no pork. And to somehow say that $33 billion is pork, Darrell Issa is 1,000% wrong, I say that again, 1,000% wrong. The speaker disagrees with him. If he wants to take it up with somebody, call Governor Christie.”
Starting Point airs weekdays from 7am to 9am ET on CNN. Check in often to join the daily conversation.