Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) still doesn’t think his vote against emergency funding for Hurricane Sandy victims was uncalled for, apparently failing to see the irony as he loudly requests Hurricane relief funding for Texas.
“Given the potential catastrophic impact that the Hurricane may have on Texas communities, we strongly support [Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s] request and urge you to provide any and all emergency protective measures available by a major disaster declaration,” read a joint statement issued by Senators Cruz and John Cornyn.
The fact that both Sens. Cruz and Cornyn (along with 34 other Republicans) voted against the Sandy relief funding bill of 2013 was not lost on MSNBC’s Katy Tur, who interviewed Cruz from a recovery center in Houston. Cruz reiterated that he voted “no” on the bill because the legislation “had nothing to do with [Hurricane] Sandy.”
Both Cruz and Cornyn maintained that the 2013 Sandy relief bill was laden with spending that was unrelated to Hurricane Sandy, citing money for Head Start and fisheries. But according to ABC News, both of those programs had been affected by the storm that rocked the East Coast in late 2012:
[T]he Health and Human Services administration for children and families noted that more than 100 Head Start and Early Head Start centers, which provide school readiness for children under 5 years old from low-income families, experienced physical damage from Sandy…
The fisheries funding cited by Cornyn’s office included $5 million “for necessary expenses related to fishery disasters during calendar year 2012 that were declared by the secretary of commerce as a direct result of impacts from Hurricane Sandy,” according to the NOAA.
While Republicans argued that the federal budget should be cut elsewhere before any funds were allocated for Sandy relief, Cruz has apparently stayed mum about whether or not he would require the same litmus test for emergency relief funding in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. In a public statement, Cruz’s office would only offer praise for the White House for committing to fully funding relief efforts in Texas:
Cruz has been lobbying 45* for full emergency relief funding for all the victims displaced by Hurricane Harvey, which has held steady over Southeast Texas and Louisiana since last weekend. More than 30,000 people are waiting out the storm in makeshift public shelters as rain continues to pummel the area. On Tuesday, the Houston office of the National Weather Service that Harvey had already dumped more than four feet of rain, setting a new national record for total rainfall from one storm:
The record for total rainfall from a tropical system has been BROKEN! Mary's Creek at Winding Road recorded 49.20", previous record is 48". pic.twitter.com/yCjuUOR8p3
— NWS Houston (@NWSHouston) August 29, 2017
Senator Cruz drew an especially significant amount of scorn for initially blocking funding for Flint, Michigan in the wake of the revelations that the city’s water supply was causing lead poisoning for the entire population. He later relented following intense outrage on social media.
(*EDITOR’S NOTE: GritPost.com is now exclusively referring to Donald Trump as “45.” Please read our official statement on Twitter explaining the decision.)
Jordan Shaw is a New Jersey-based writer and commentator specializing in national and state government issues for Grit Post. When he’s not writing, you can find him volunteering in Camden, New Jersey, or hiking the Wissahickon Valley Park.