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Blumenthal Pushes For Federal Disaster Relief On The Gulf Coast

Ebong Udoma
U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal speaks to the press on Monday at the New Haven Emergency Operations Center, alongside Rick Fontanta, deputy director of Emergency Operations for the city of New Haven.

U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., says he’ll push for federal disaster relief spending on Houston and other areas of the Gulf Coast, despite the fact that a number of Republican members of Congress from that area did not support similar federal relief for Connecticut following Hurricane Sandy.

Blumenthal, who’s a Democrat, says natural disasters are a humanitarian crisis and potentially an economic crisis that often affects the whole nation, and that’s why members of Congress have to come together in a bipartisan way to deal with them.

“I’ve spoken to a number of my Republican colleagues, I think there is a shared feeling that we need to do better than we did after Sandy and we must provide the kind of disaster relief that befits our great nation. One nation. And I’m certainly willing to push forward and help to lead that effort.”

Following Hurricane Sandy in 2012, more than 20 Republican members of Congress from Texas, including U.S. Senators Ted Cruz and John Cornyn, voted against a $50 billion federal disaster relief package for Connecticut, New York and other northeastern states affected by the storm. Most had argued that the relief package was not fiscally sound.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.