News & Politics

Republican Votes Against Hurricane Sandy Assistance 7 Years After Begging For Aid Post-Katrina

Talking Points Memo highlights how Steven Palazzo, a Republican from Mississippi, voted against aid for victims of Hurricane Sandy after pleading for federal hurricane relief in 2005.

Rep. Steven Palazzo
Photo Credit: US House of Representatives/Wikimedia Commons

A lawmaker from Mississippi is coming under fire for voting against aid to Hurricane Sandy victims seven years after he pleaded with federal officials to fund the recovery in his storm-battered community after Hurricane Katrina. Talking Points Memo reports on the details today.

The lawmaker, Rep. Steven Palazzo (R-MS), was Deputy Director and CFO of the Biloxi Housing Authority in 2005, when Hurricane Katrina battered the Gulf Coast. Biloxi, a city in Mississippi, was hit hard by Hurricane Katrina. Talking Points Memo cites a pamphlet in which Palazzo is quoted as pleading for federal aid.

“We will rebuild and we’ll provide homes for those displaced; but we cannot do that until it is funded,” Palazzo was quoted as saying. “We’re ready to do the work- but we simply do not have the financial resources on our own to handle a catastrophe like Katrina...Send us money so we can put families back together and do our part to rebuild our community.”

Now, when a hurricane has battered the East Coast, Palazzo is singing a different tune. Last week, he was one of 67 Republicans to vote against a Sandy relief package that passed the House last week. His spokesperson told Talking Points Memo that “Palazzo would have supported a bill with ‘offsets,’ equivalent spending cuts to cover the cost of Sandy relief aid.”

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Alex Kane is former World editor at AlterNet. His work has appeared in Mondoweiss, Salon, VICE, the Los Angeles Review of Books and more. Follow him on Twitter @alexbkane.