Houses Passes Hurricane Sandy Relief…Or At Least Some of It

When Chris Christie speaks, Republicans listen. After taking it on the chin from Christie for scuttling a vote on a $60 billion Sandy relief bill, Speaker John Boehner quickly changed his tune and brought a more incremental piece of legislation to the House floor today, which passed by a wide margin. Once the Senate passes the measure (as they are expected to) homeowners would receive $9.7 billion in damages from the National Flood Insurance Program, which the bill supplied with extra borrowing power. (The NFIP has already addressed 140,000 claims totaling $1.7 billion.) While some NY/NJ lawmakers seemed somewhat mollified by the vote, others still had smoke steaming out of their ears. “This bill is not enough,” Westchester County Democrat Nina Lowey said. “We don’t need a piecemeal approach.” This portion of the flood relief package was among the least contentious; don’t expect the House to pass other elements so readily. [NYT]