U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) condemned Republican leaders in the House of Representatives for failing to take action on Senate-passed legislation that would have provided $60.4 billion in aid to areas affected by Hurricane Sandy, including Connecticut. Funding would have been awarded to municipalities for flood mitigation, infrastructure improvements and other vital relief efforts.
Republican leaders in the House of Representatives declined to call the legislation for a vote late Tuesday, meaning the package must return to the Senate for reconsideration after the new Congress convenes.
"I'm dismayed and outraged by the House leadership's disgraceful petty partisan politics in failing to approve the Senate's bipartisan Sandy aid package. I am beyond disappointed. Republican leaders in the House of Representatives have played a cruel game of politics with thousands of vulnerable families and businesses who were relying on this aid to rebuild their lives, their businesses and their communities. Last night's failure by GOP leadership marked a sharp deviation from our nation's proud history of bipartisan support for victims of natural disasters. This funding was absolutely vital, not only for the families, businesses and communities still struggling to return to normal after the devastating damage wrought by Hurricane Sandy, but also for the region as a whole to proactively improve its infrastructure and systems to prevent destruction from future storms. Unfortunately, these violent weather events are becoming more and more frequent. Failure to act extends the hardships families and businesses continue to face, and leaves thousands more vulnerable to similar devastation when the next storm hits. I will renew the fight for this critical funding in the next session. I applaud my colleagues in the Senate for their bipartisan support of this measure, and hope that the new year brings a new spirit of bipartisan support for the legislation in the House," said Senator Blumenthal.