90 House Republicans — including 4 Texans — heartlessly vote against Hurricane Harvey relief


Some Texas Republicans are not even willing to soften their debt ceiling demagoguery to help their own constituents.

After quickly passing the Senate, the Harvey relief bill, which is part of a larger resolution to keep the government open and raise the debt ceiling, went to the House, where it also sailed through.

Just as in the Senate, a sizable fraction of the Republican House caucus — 90 of them in total — voted against the measure, while every single Democrat voted in favor.

What made this vote tally even more inexplicable than the Senate, however, is that four Republican representatives in Texas voted against the measure.

The Texans who voted "no" were Sam Johnson, Jeb Hensarling, Joe Barton, and Mac Thornberry — all of whom represent congressional districts in the northern parts of the state, which experienced little or no damage from the storm.

When pressed, Thornberry gave the implausible excuse that he thought the bill did not go far enough in military spending:

Not only did these lawmakers reject critical funding that is necessary to keep the government and the entire economy functional, but they heartlessly denied desperately needed aid to their neighbors just a couple of hours south of their districts.

Even Sen. Ted Cruz, who led the charge to shut down the government in 2013, and who voted to deny disaster relief for Hurricane Sandy, was not cruel enough to refuse aid to his fellow Texans.

These House Republicans ought to ask themselves what they are even doing in a position of public service, if they are opposed to the most basic, fundamental role of government in helping the public.