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.”

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.