Pair have cited debt concerns in the past for bills similar to last night’s disaster relief vote; comes soon after voting for tax bill that may cost as much as $2.2 trillion
INDIANAPOLIS – Congressmen Messer and Rokita hypocritically voted to deny aid to American disaster relief victims last night, likely because of concerns about the deficit, just days after strongly supporting the McConnell tax bill that will add as much as $2.2 trillion to the debt over the next ten years.
The House yesterday passed an $81 billion emergency disaster relief bill that will help Americans affected by the hurricanes that hit the Gulf this summer and those harmed by the wildfires on the Pacific Coast. The bill went through with a strong bipartisan majority, but both Congressmen Messer and Rokita voted against it. Neither have issued a public statement on why they voted against disaster victims, but this is the third disaster relief bill that the pair of Washington Republicans have voted against in recent months; both men cited concerns about the national debt as their rationale for their previous opposition.
The deficit was far from both men’s minds, however, when they voted three times to pass the McConnell tax plan. Independent economists say that bill will add as much as $2.2 trillion to the national debt over ten years. In a poll of economists from across the political spectrum by the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, every single person surveyed believed the McConnell bill would add to the deficit.
Voting for the McConnell tax bill has exposed Congressmen Messer’s and Rokita’s hypocrisy on deficits. As columnist Brian Howey put it this week, neither Congressmen “Messer or Rokita can talk with any credibility about the deficit” after their tax votes.
“Congressmen Messer’s and Rokita’s vote yesterday shows they’re much more concerned with looking out for their special interest donors than their fellow Americans still rebuilding their lives after fires and hurricanes,” said Will Baskin-Gerwitz, Senior Media Strategist for the Indiana Democratic Party. “The Republicans who were able to find trillions of dollars to reward their special interest allies when they voted for the McConnell bill but can’t find even a fraction of that for American disaster relief victims ought to be ashamed. Every fear-mongering complaint about the deficit from Congressmen Messer and Rokita should be seen for what it is: hypocrisy, pure and simple.”