The No. 2 House Republican said that if Congress doles out additional money to assist in the aftermath of natural disasters across the country, the spending may need to be offset.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said “if there is support for a supplemental, it would be accompanied by support for having pay-fors to that supplemental.”
You would think Cantor would at least wait until search teams had stopped finding bodies from the storm 48 hours ago to play the "spending cuts or else" game. And Joplin is in Roy Blount's old district, now represented by Republican freshman Billy Long. Yeah, that's right, Cantor's telling other Republicans to go to hell, and that spending cuts will have to be found to pay for helping Joplin. Republicans really care, don't they? I wonder what Rep. Long has to say about that?
Damage totals from the Joplin tornado could top $3 billion dollars. And that's just the insured buildings. The uninsured? The price tag on that and the damaged infrastructure in town could be billions more. Republicans were ready to shut down the government over that much money just a few short months ago. And now Cantor is warning that cuts will have to be made before Joplin gets any help.
Oh, and just today, more tornadoes ripped through Oklahoma southwest of Oklahoma City, where Republican Tom Cole is the representative in OK-4. I wonder how he feels about telling the people who live in Chickasha, Oklahoma that his party won't authorize a dime to help them unless Republicans cut that money from some other part of the budget?
Wait, I know, it's the fault of people living in the Midwest in tornado country for living there, isn't it? Why should people in the other 433 congressional House districts in America pay to help them, right? It's not like the general welfare clause means anything to the GOP anyway...
Right? Would Cantor be saying the same thing if a tornado or massive storm swept through VA-7 and the suburbs north of Richmond, causing billions of dollars of damage? Which would be a worse answer, that he wouldn't expect spending cuts before helping his own district out...or that he would insist upon them?
Somebody should ask him that. Meanwhile, the Right Wing Noise Machine is already springing into action, with Glenn Beck telling his audience today that he would like to see a tornado-stricken town tell FEMA to turn around and leave rather than accept any federal help, scolding the people of Joplin for not being "prepared enough".
Indeed, how long is it going to take before the 2012 GOP Clown Car kids start attacking the people of Joplin for wanting government handouts and being nothing more than lazy welfare cases who should pay for the clean-up themselves because they live there?
That's the vision of disaster relief Republicans have for America right now. I wonder how that will play in blood-red Tornado Alley.