The Hill Reports: Boehner scrapped plans to bring a $27 billion Sandy relief package, without spending-cut offsets, to the floor late Tuesday night. The move means that the Senate’s $60.4 billion Sandy bill will die and the notoriously slow body will have to start from scratch on a new bill.
The plan had been to allow a vote on the bill and on an amendment increasing the aid by another $33 billion. The sudden change of plans came after most members of the GOP voted against the “fiscal cliff” bill that turned off most of the $500 billion in tax increases and delayed spending cuts coming into effect in 2013.
House appropriators had released a pared-down Sandy bill earlier in the day and played no role in scuttling its consideration.
GOP sources said that after Republican members expressed frustration about how the fiscal-cliff bill had little or no spending cuts, leaders weren’t going to ask rank-and-file members to approve $60 billion in new spending.
These sources also say that they expect that the House will take up and resolve the issue “promptly” this month. In the meantime, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has said its disaster-relief fund still has a positive balance until March, Republicans point out.