Not surprising that Bush has again turned his back on Katrina victims. Yes, the man who looked in to eyes of the suffering residents of
Fortunately Congress has the votes in both houses to override Bush.
- Bush brushed aside significant objections from Capitol Hill, even from Republicans, in thwarting legislation that provides money for projects like repairing hurricane damage, restoring wetlands and preventing flooding in communities across the nation.
- This level of opposition virtually assured that Bush would have a veto overridden for the first time in his presidency. He has used the veto very sparingly for most of the time he has been in office, but has made more use of it recently.
- “More than two years after failing to respond to the devastation and destruction of Hurricane Katrina, he is refusing to fund important projects guided by the Army Corps of Engineers that are essential to protecting the people of the Gulf Coast region.”
- The $23 billion water bill passed in both chambers of Congress by well more than the two-thirds majority needed to override a veto and make the bill law.
- Bush objected to the $9 billion in projects added during negotiations between the House and Senate. He hoped that his action, even though it is sure not to hold, would cast him as a friend to conservatives who demand a tighter rein on federal spending.
- But Bush never vetoed spending bills under the Republican Congress, despite budgetary increases then, too. Attempting to demonstrate fiscal toughness in the seventh year of his presidency, Bush risks being criticized for doing too little, too late and of waging a transparently partisan attack against the Democrats who now run Capitol Hill.
- “Only in Washington could the House take a $14 billion bill into a conference with the Senate’s $15 billion bill and emerge with a compromise that costs taxpayers over $23 billion,” said White House press secretary Dana Perino.
- Bush vetoed the bill because it is “fiscally irresponsible” and falls outside the scope of the mission of the Army Corps of Engineers, she said
- Critics noted the Corps already has a backlog of $58 billion worth of projects and an annual budget of only about $2 billion to address them.
Someone need to explain to Bush and Perino that all the repairs and maintenance of nations waterway fall under the Army Corps of Engineers.