Senate Republicans on Monday blasted their Democratic colleagues for blocking a disaster relief bill that was intended to help Midwestern regions affected by flooding because it supposedly didn’t go far enough to help Puerto Rico.
The bill, originally sponsored by Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., proposed $13.5 billion in relief funding for areas recently hit by natural disasters. The 44-49 vote fell short of a majority, and far short of the 60 votes needed to overcome a Democratic filibuster.
Democrats want to add almost $700 million more to unlock further disaster aid for Puerto Rico and several states, including help to rebuild badly damaged water systems. Democrats are also trying to force the Trump administration to release billions of dollars in rebuilding funds that have already been approved.
Republicans accused Democrats of playing partisan politics.
“Disaster funding should not be a partisan issue, yet for months, Congress has repeatedly played politics with much-needed aid at the expense of local communities in Florida, Puerto Rico, and around the nation that are struggling to recover,” tweeted Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.
— Senator Rubio Press (@SenRubioPress) April 2, 2019