Oklahoma freshmen representatives vote against Sandy relief
BY RANDY KREHBIEL World Staff Writer
Friday, January 04, 2013
1/04/13 at 4:07 PM
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Oklahoma's two freshman congressmen, Jim Bridenstine and Markwayne Mullin, were among 67 Republicans to vote against nearly $10 billion in emergency relief for flood victims in the northeast United States.
“We recognize the need to honor the federal commitment to flood insurance holders," said Bridenstine in a written statement. "The proper way to increase the cap on disaster relief spending is to cut spending elsewhere. While the Obama administration has argued that emergency spending should be exempt from offsets, we cannot continue to spend money that doesn’t exist."
The bill, which passed 354-67, authorizes the National Flood Insurance Program to borrow nearly $9.7 billion to meet claims filed by people flooded in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
“We have had plenty of time since the 2005 Hurricane Katrina Relief efforts to identify potential offsetting cuts in case of another disaster and to reform FEMA’s insurance program," said Bridenstine. "Following Katrina, Congress rushed in with funding which was followed by years of waste and apparently few lessons learned.”
The Club for Growth, an influential conservative organization, opposed the bill, saying the federal government should not be involved in flood insurance.
Oklahoma's two freshman congressmen, Markwayne Mullin (left) and Jim Bridenstine (right). Tulsa World File