A joint statement was issued by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie:
“With all that New York and New Jersey and our millions of residents and small businesses have suffered and endured, this continued inaction and indifference by the House of Representatives is inexcusable. It has now been 66 days since Hurricane Sandy hit and 27 days since President Obama put forth a responsible aid proposal that passed with a bi-partisan vote in the Senate while the House has failed to even bring it to the floor. This failure to come to the aid of Americans following a severe and devastating natural disaster is unprecedented. The fact that days continue to go by while people suffer, families are out of their homes, and men and women remain jobless and struggling during these harsh winter months is a dereliction of duty. When American citizens are in need we come to their aid. That tradition was abandoned in the House last night.
“The people of our states can no long afford to wait while politicians in Washington play games.”
Continuing the thoughts expressed in their statement, Chris held a press conference today.
“For me it was disappointing and disgusting to watch,”said Christie. He said that blame lies at the feet of House Speaker John Boehner. “It was the Speaker’s decision and his alone,” Christie said, and that President Obama “has assured me of his continued support.”
The vote on aid “could not overcome the toxic politics” of the House Majority. It’s a game of one-upsmanship ahead of the citizens.
Christie further spoke, visibly disgusted, when he said that New York and New Jersey, and other areas hit by Sandy have been treated as “second-class citizens” and that natural disasters are not supposed to partisan issues.
“America deserves better” and said “Shame on you” to Congress for their inability to put aside the politics and help our people now. He said that the suffering hasn’t gone away and that he and Cuomo “will not stop fighting” to see that justice is done for the citizens.
“Unlike people in Congress, we have actual responsibilities,” he said.
It’s truly a shame that it takes a disaster to bring agreement to both sides of the aisle and it’s absolutely pathetic that the partisanship in Washington has reached such lows that even emergency disaster relief that is needed to rebuild homes and businesses — which will subsequently help to stimulate the local economy.
What will it take for the bickering to stop and Congress to do the people’s work? Public shaming? We all have to stay tuned…