Dancin' David Gregory had on his favorite washed-up politico on his roundtable: Newt Gingrich. Again.
And Newt is doing his damnedest to put a good spin on the inexcusable fact that the House delayed voting on the Hurricane Sandy relief bill. It wasn't that they didn't care about the good people of New York and New Jersey, mind you, it was because the bill was laden with pork, donchaknow?
I think it's, this will clearly distinguish the two parties. That bill, 64% of it did not spend out in the next two years. 31% of it had nothing, nothing, zero, to do. The train came through and the boys said, "Let's throw the pork on the train." It came out of the Senate as-- exactly why the country's now sick. This is not emergency spending.
--four states, who said they needed that bill--
Yeah, they of course they want any bill. They don't care how much extra the rest of the country spends as long as they get what they want. I understand that. That's local politics in a crisis. I think the House should have passed a purely stripped down reform bill that met everything for Sandy and nothing for the pork. Now the country would have understood clearly doing that. And I think the House is not moving at the speed it needs to.
Well, sure the country would absolutely understand stripping pork out of the bill. I mean, that bill was intended to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy and it would be unconscionable for some Senator to throw some unrelated spending project on top of it, delaying the relief so desperately needed.
Fox News is continuing its hunt for "pork" in a Hurricane Sandy relief bill blocked by House Speaker John Boehner, claiming that the bill included $600 million for the Environmental Protection Agency to address climate change. But the funds in question actually focused on ensuring affected states' access to clean water, a crucial issue in the wake of the storm - and emblematic of future consequences of climate change.
Rep. Boehner recently canceled a vote on a Sandy relief bill, prompting heavy criticism from some members of his own party. He later reversed course and called for a vote on $9 billion for the National Flood Insurance Program, with another $51 billion in relief spending to be voted on later.
Let's be clear, just because Republicans can't understand why improving wastewater systems or Amtrak lines (heavily used along the Eastern seaboard hit hard by Sandy), doesn't necessarily make it pork. There were undoubtedly extraneous spending projects in the bill (as there are in EVERY bill and one of the few bipartisan actions Congress is capable of), but that's not why Boehner didn't put the bill up for a vote and every single person at that table knew that. But delaying relief for victims who are now dealing with mold and other potentially life-threatening issues because Boehner is afraid of the extreme fringe of his own party is absolutely a dereliction of his duties.