House Republicans plan to introduce $81 billion disaster aid package

House Republicans will introduce Monday an $81 billion disaster aid package after the hurricanes and wildfires this y...

Posted: Dec 19, 2017 1:02 PM
Updated: Dec 19, 2017 1:02 PM

House Republicans will introduce Monday an $81 billion disaster aid package after the hurricanes and wildfires this year.

This is almost double the $44 billion figure the Trump administration requested recently and come in response to efforts Republicans from Texas and Florida pressing for additional resources.

Texas GOP Rep. Mike McCaul confirmed the leadership is moving forward with the $81 billion package and says it also includes resources for Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and California wildfires, in addition to Texas and Florida.

He also said if it is attached to a stopgap funding bill it could help push the bill through since Texas and Florida delegations will support it and represent a large bloc of votes.

Both chambers of Congress must act before the end of the week to keep government funding and prevent a shutdown. The House is expected to vote on the GOP tax plan on Tuesday.

Texas GOP Rep. Pete Sessions told reporters the massive bill to help rebuild communities hit by storms would not be funded with cuts to other programs, arguing this was emergency money.

Republican leaders were still figuring out how to proceed and if they would tack the measure into a must pass bill to avoid a shutdown. With many conservatives unlikely to back a short term bill some GOP members believe this move could attract more support and also pressure Democrats to vote for a year end package.

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