GOP congressman stands alone, blocks massive $19.1 billion spending bill

25 Mai, 2019, 04:34 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer hold a press conference on Capitol Hill in Washington DC

"Now, after the President and Senate Republicans disrupted and delayed disaster relief for more than four months, House Republicans have made a decision to wage their own sabotage", Pelosi said.

Only one vote was needed to defeat the motion.

The bill cleared the Senate on Thursday, after Mrs. Pelosi had released the chamber for its vacation.

He also objected to speeding the measure through a almost empty chamber, saying it was important for lawmakers to actually vote on a bill that "spends a significant amount of taxpayer money".

Following the objection, the House ended its session. House leadership was trying to pass the bill by unanimous consent. "I have not decided what I'm going to do next week, but I also have a job to do back in Texas".

But since the House did not go through regular, more time-consuming procedures, it needed the consent of all of its current 432 members to approve the bill.

Mr. Roy was the one to make an objection. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.

Representative Chip Roy, a first-term Republican, objected to holding the vote, citing concerns that the legislation did not include $4.5 billion Trump had requested to deal with a surge of Central American immigrants on the southwestern border.

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Schumer, meanwhile, played a key role up to and during fast-paced developments on Thursday that propelled the measure through the Senate and appeared before reporters to take a victory lap after the vote - while McConnell gave a speech lamenting how long the process took and casting blame at Democrats for killing the must-do border aid package. The Senate bill passed 85-8. Hours later, Trump wrote on Twitter that the measure had his "total approval".

After months of fighting, Democrats bested Trump and won further aid to Puerto Rico, the US territory slammed by back-to-back hurricanes in 2017. It would provide over $600 million in nutrition assistance and $304 million in aid for Puerto Rico, which was devastated by Hurricane Maria in 2017. That includes $600 million in emergency funding for Puerto Rico's food stamp program, as well as more than $300 million to help the island cover costs for infrastructure fix projects. "It's the people's House", the congressman said. "We must pass this bicameral, bipartisan bill and we will keep working to get it through the House and onto the President's desk".

Roy discussed his reasons objecting with reporters in the Capitol on Friday. Shelby and Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) announced that President Donald Trump agreed to this strategy. He also said the relief money would add to the federal deficit, and noted that only a few lawmakers were present to vote on it, because most had already left for the Memorial Day recess.

But he could be inviting political peril by stalling the disaster bill.

Trump said Thursday that he meant to support the legislation anyway. And Roy barely won his general election with 50.2 percent of the vote.

The legislation is crucial to states still reeling from devastating hurricanes over the past two years and epic flooding.

Roy has previously served as a top deputy to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who is now leading a multistate lawsuit seeking to overturn the Affordable Care Act.

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