Idaho Republican Sens. Mike Crapo and Jim Risch joined their Idaho colleagues in the U.S. House—Reps. Raul Labrador and Mike Simpson—in thumbing their collective noses at a $50.5 billion aid package for those hit hardest by Hurricane Sandy.
Crapo and Risch joined 34 other GOP senators but lost the vote 62 to 36 to secure aid for the Northeast U.S. recovering from the devastation of the October superstorm.
Nine Republicans joined 53 Democrats on the roll call, which narrowly met the required 60-vote threshold. Additionally, the bill's proponents had to defeat another GOP effort to impose across-the-board cuts from prior appropriations to cover the relief cost.
The financial aid comes not a moment too soon. The region's rail system—which serves 40 percent of the transit riders in the nation—remains weakened by flooding. Manhattan's South Ferry subway station was largely destroyed and New York transit workers continue to add extra shifts to crank rail switches by hand.