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Congress Passes $51.8 Billion in Katrina Aid

Congress approves a $51.8 billion emergency spending bill for Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts. But some Democrats are not happy about the legislation, and they have further questions about the effectiveness of a congressional investigation into the failures of the relief effort.

Both the House of Representatives and the Senate passed the legislation Thursday, a rarity for a body that can take far longer to dwell on aid packages. The House vote was 410 to 11; the Senate was 97 to 0.

Last week, President Bush asked for and received $10.5 billion in aid for the Gulf Coast region. More than $23 billion of the new package is earmarked for individual housing and medical assistance.

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Andrea Seabrook
Andrea Seabrook covers Capitol Hill as NPR's Congressional Correspondent.