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Chris Christie Urges Federal Aid For Hurricane Harvey, Calls Texas Republicans 'Hypocrites'

On Monday, President Donald Trump promised "full support as Texas and Louisiana battle and recover from this very devastating and historic storm" Harvey, which is now a Tropical Storm that continues to unleash destruction throughout the region. About $3 billion is immediately available in existing federal disaster funds, according to the Washington Post, but Trump added, "The real number, which will be many billions of dollars, will go through Congress." Lawmakers from New York and New Jersey agreed that supporting victims of Harvey was important—but reminded Texas that the North remembers how some members of Congress voted in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

"[Hurricane Sandy was] the disaster that was the longest, in waiting in terms of getting federal, aid and I hope that that's not what happens to the folks in Texas with Harvey," NJ Governor Chris Christie said on Monday.

Here's the full transcript:

Reporter: Do you think it’s hypocritical that some legislators who rejected Sandy aid are now asking for this aid from…?

Governor Christie: Absolutely, sure. The congressional members in Texas are hypocrites, and I said back in 2012, they’d be proven to be hypocrites. It was just a matter of time. You know when you’re a state that has any kind of coastal exposure, like Texas does to the Gulf, you’re going to wind up having some type of disaster that’s going to befall the people of your state. Then, all of a sudden, you’re not going to want a conversation of all the philosophical niceties because people are suffering and dying and you want to make sure you minimize that as much as you can. That’s why I took the steps in 2012, when I did, to oppose the folks, the Republicans in Congress, who delayed Sandy aid.

We were the disaster that was the longest in waiting in terms of getting federal aid, and I hope that’s not what happens to the folks in Texas from Harvey, and I can tell you this. I’ll be urging all the members, even though I’m sure there’s going to be some temptation by New Jersey House members in particular to drag their feet a little bit based upon what these folks in Texas did to us during Sandy. I’m going to be urging all our members to rise above that and provide the aid as quickly as possible and I’m sure that New Jersey members of Congress will be supportive of what needs to be done to help the people in Harvey.

Sandy aid was delayed by three months.

Rep. Peter King (R-Long Island) agreed, Tweeting, "As lifelong NYer w/ NY values I will vote for emergency Harvey $ for Ted Cruz's constituents. Above all, true Americans must stand together." and "Ted Cruz & Texas cohorts voted vs NY/NJ aid after Sandy but I'll vote 4 Harvey aid. NY wont abandon Texas. 1 bad turn doesnt deserve another."

Senator Ted Cruz, notably, said of Sandy aid in 2013, "Emergency relief for the families who are suffering from this natural disaster should not be used as a Christmas tree for billions in unrelated spending. The United States Senate should not be in the business of exploiting victims of natural disasters to fund pork projects that further expand our debt."

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio deployed the FDNY to Texas, and Governor Andrew Cuomo sent emergency personnel and equipment from the National Guard. De Blasio had Tweeted on Sunday, "After Superstorm Sandy, people across the country helped us. Now it’s our turn to repay the favor."

President Trump is visiting Houston today with First Lady Melania Trump. More rain is expected to hit afflicted areas—projections range from 15 inches to 20 inches, after about 30 inches has already hit.

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