Schumer And Leahy Introduce Bill To Provide Assistance To All Disaster-Impacted Areas, Including the Midwest, Southeast, And Puerto Rico

Schumer-Leahy Amendment Is Yet Another Opportunity For Senate Republicans To Support Disaster Assistance For All Americans And Reject President Trump’s Refusal To Support Citizens In Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON (Thursday, April 11, 2019) – Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday introduced a comprehensive, emergency disaster supplemental appropriations package that would provide relief to all American citizens from recent natural disasters.  The package totals $17.2 billion and includes $3 billion in funding for disasters in the Midwest and Southeast. This amendment is a companion bill to the legislation introduced earlier this week by House Democrats.

The House passed a disaster supplemental funding bill in January in an effort to provide disaster relief to all impacted communities.  Unfortunately, the Senate has failed to act for three months because the President does not want to provide additional assistance to the U.S. citizens in Puerto Rico who were devastated by two category five hurricanes. 

Leahy and Schumer said: “The unfortunate dispute over disaster appropriations in the Senate has been whether or not to provide relief to all American citizens suffering from recent natural disasters, no matter their zip code.  Despite what the President may think, Senate Democrats firmly believe it is the responsibility of Congress to provide that relief.  This package does that.  We cannot and will not pick and choose which citizens to help based on petty, political disputes.”

Senate Republicans have previously blocked efforts by Leahy and Schumer to extend disaster relief to communities affected by 2019 disasters  and to provide disaster relief for all American communities in every state and territory affected by recent natural disasters.

Bill text available here https://www.leahy.senate.gov/download/041119  

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