Cantor Says Congress Won’t Pay For Missouri Disaster Relief Unless Spending Is Cut Elsewhere
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), however, said that before Congress approved federal funds for disaster relief, it had to offset the spending with cuts to other programs. The Washington Times reports:
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said Monday that if Congress passes an emergency spending bill to help Missouri’s tornado victims, the extra money will have to be cut from somewhere else.
“If there is support for a supplemental, it would be accompanied by support for having pay-fors to that supplemental,” Mr. Cantor, Virginia Republican, told reporters at the Capitol. The term “pay-fors” is used by lawmakers to signal cuts or tax increases used to pay for new spending.
Think about that for a minute. Let it swirl around your brain, let it bathe your synapses in its simplicity.
Remember the context. Joplin, Missouri. Thirty percent of the town leveled by a tornado. One hundred twenty three dead; fifteen hundred missing. A swath of homes and businesses six miles long and three quarters of a mile wide flattened.
And this disgusting little Republican will hold that town hostage to his ideology of greed and lust for power. Suffering? Mass death? Physical and economic devastation? That means nothing to Republicans, except as a bargaining chip used to implement their insane dogma of governance.
Republicans consistently fail to understand that government is not a business and cannot be run like one, certainly not like the piratical, rapacious sort of business that they favor. That is not to say that some business practices might not be useful in increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of government. But a country is not a business. When a community is hurt, is devastated, when a community’s people are dying and injured, the role of government is to step in and help. Period. No quibbles. No qualms. No bargaining. No ideological grandstanding.
Unfortunately, because of Republican policies and Republican intransigence and Republican arrogance, the entire country is hurting. Yes, Democrats are not guilt free, but Republicans have the bloody hands in American economic failure (and intellectual failure).
And the Republican answer has been to hand more taxpayer money to the wealthy and to the oil companies, two elements who are swimming in riches already.
The Republican answer is to destroy the social safety nets of unemployment insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, and by impoverishing the people whom these social programs serve, hand the financial benefits over to the already wealthy insurance corporations and financial companies.
The Republicans have not created a single job since 2010. They have stood in the economic doorway like fire-breathing Southern governors of times gone by and bellowed, “This shall not pass.”
And when a monstrous disaster befalls a place like Joplin, Missouri, the Republicans just tighten their hold on the doorframe with one hand and hold out the other to take a bribe before they will let the people’s government put out a hand to help the people of Joplin.
That’s the act of a sociopath, and the Republicans have institutionalized sociopathy in the heart of their politics, right along with profound greed, unfettered lust for power, willful and profitable ignorance, and a broad bigotry that attacks any class or group that is neither wealthy nor powerful.
They loudly claim they represent American values, and they do. They represent the worst, the lowest, the most disgusting American values.
If the United States is to survive as a democracy, the Republicans have to be kicked to the ash heap and buried there.