WASHINGTON – Congressman Ron Estes (R-Wichita) says that while he supports disaster relief efforts, he had to draw the line on what he would support in a recent vote. The Fourth District Representative said that he refused to support a recent bill that included money for things other hurricane relief as it went to the United States Senate.
“My heart goes out to all of those in Houston and the Gulf region who have had their lives turned upside down by Hurricane Harvey. Americans and private organizations who came to their aid without preconditions or expecting anything in return represent the best of the American spirit.” Estes said in a statement. “While I was proud to support a relief bill without preconditions in the House, I could not support the Senate version that essentially used the relief bill to bailout Washington politicians who don’t want to do the hard work of setting priorities and living within our means. Congress should respond to this terrible storm, but we can’t ignore the approaching fiscal storm. We need to prepare for that storm today, and bring down our debt, not put it off until tomorrow.”
U.S. Representative Lynn Jenkins took a similar stance, telling the Topeka Capitol-Journal that she could not in good conscious support a bill that in addition to disaster relief, raised the federal debt limit.
“I was elected by Kansans to help get our national debt under control and this bill only makes the problem worse,” said Jenkins, who isn’t seeking re-election in 2018. “Make no mistake, I stand with Texas but I believe this could have been handled differently – one vote on disaster relief and a separate vote on the continuing resolution and debt limit increase that included spending reforms.”
The Senate approved the resolution 80-17 on Thursday, and the House answered 316-90 on Friday. All votes in opposition were cast by Republicans.