Rep. Chip. Roy (R-Texas) has stalled a $19 billion aid bill in the house of Representatives, until the House reconvenes in early June.
Here’s what we know
The aid bill included $3 billion for farmers, and $909 million in food benefits and other aid to Puerto Rico. $3 billion was set aside to “rebuild our military bases and coast guard facilities.”
After the bill overwhelmingly passed the Senate by a vote of 85 to 8 on Thursday, President Donald Trump tweeted that the bill had his “total approval.” Before the bill passed, all money allocated for border security had been removed from it.
Congressional leaders tried to have it passed by unanimous consent of those members who were present on Friday morning. According to congressional rules, if a single member objects to this, the bill is blocked until the rest of the House returns.
Roy said that the bill needed to include funding for Trump’s border policies, and the federal government was racking up too much debt. He told his congressional colleagues that the U.S. needed to “have a responsive and fiscally responsive approach to help people who are hurting in the wake of natural disasters” but that he did not want “to let the swamp continue to mortgage the future of our children and grandchildren.” He called it the “kind of swampy practice” that “Texans elected me to stand against.”
“The people, particularly in Texas, but people generally, are tired of the swamp,” Roy told the press after stalling the bill, “and this is a very swampy thing to do — have a vote on a Friday heading into Memorial Day weekend and after we recess, when we could have done our job yesterday when we had 435 members of Congress who should be here and should vote.”
Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has called Roy’s decision “sabotage.”