Pay It Later

In the vote Tuesday on the Hurricane Sandy relief bill there were opportunities to demonstrate seriousness in paying for your spending. The GOP did not acquit itself well in either case.

The more publicized one was an amendment supported by Reps. Cantor and Ryan that would have paid for $17 billion of that spending by reducing discretionary spending across-the-board by an equal amount. The cut would have been 1.6%. Here’s the roll call of that vote; 71 Republican members of the House could not see clear to pay a cent and a half on a dollar of discretionary spending towards Sandy. Do one of those 71 represent you? 

A second amendment though, may be even more galling. This one stripped out $13 million of funding to “accelerate the National Weather Service ground readiness project.” According to Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) this money was for speeding up the preparation of processing data from satellites to be launched in 2-5 years. I.e., it’s not an emergency. Nevertheless, the amendment failed to pass, 208-214, with 25 Republicans voting no. Do one of those 25 represent you?

If we can’t even remove $13 million from an “emergency” bill for spending on something due in 2-5 years, how serious are we about reducing spending? It’s demagoguery that cows those weaker lights in our House. Rather than piddle away thousands of dollars on communications retreats, hire a private investigator to search for the caucus’ spine.