18 New Clowns

The House Vote on Sandy

Paul Ryan voted against Sandy relief; plus, the 18 no-voting GOP freshmen.

So Sandy aid finally passed, by 354 to 67, with nine not voting. Now that's lopsided, I suppose, by any measure. But 67 votes against hurricane relief (all of them Republican) seems like kind of a lot, doesn't it? The Katrina funding, for example, passed by 410 to 11 (and yes, all 11 were Republicans then, too).

The New York Times has a fine interactive map showing where the no votes came from. There's a slight concentration from the South, but really they're from all around the country, and a little surprising. For example, all of Wisconsin's present-and-voting Republicans voted nyet. Yes, this included Paul Ryan. This is a dim memory now, so help me out here, but didn't he once want to be the vice-president of the whole country or something like that?

It's worth knowing here that the Club for Growth counseled a "no" vote, so Ryan probably felt moved to get back in their good graces after his scandalously responsible vote for the fiscal cliff deal. The Club will have none of that!

Kansas is the only entirely no state, where all three members (all of them Reps, it goes without saying) voted against. (Montana was also technically all no, but that was just one guy.) I was under the impression that they get tornadoes and things like that out there in Kansas. Well bubs, next time Kansas is devastated, I will use whatever earthly powers I have to make sure that members of Congress know how the three of you voted on this one.

Special mention is earned by Jim Sensenbrenner of Wisconsin and Virginia Foxx of North Carolina, the only two stalwarts to vote against relief for both Sandy and Katrina. I guess it's unprofessional to hope people's houses burn down, but let's at least wish a parking ticket on them.

Now, let's think for a moment about freshmen. This is one of their very first votes! I was intrigued enough by this thought that I took the good time and trouble to look up every single freshman member--there were 18, and they were all Reps--who thought it was a grand idea to begin their congressional careers by voting against Sandy aid. If I have any friends left at the Daily News, the Post, and NY1, and you happen to see this, I hope you will heed this list and perhaps reproduce it. Here they are, by state:

Arizona: Matt Salmon (interestingly all of Arizona’s five Republicans voted no)

Arkansas: Tom Cotton (three other Arkansas R’s voted yes)

Florida: Ted Yoho, Ron DeSantis (one frosh Repub from the state, Trey Radel, voted yes)

Georgia: Doug Collins (surrounded by several other R’s who also voted no)

Kentucky: Andy Barr

Michigan: Kerry Bentivolio (to make matters even worse, this sounded like a potentially hot woman, but it’s a balding guy)

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Montana: Steve Daines

North Carolina: Richard Hudson, Mark Meadows, George Holding

Ohio: Brad Wenstrup

Oklahoma: Markwayne Mullin, Jim Bridenstine

Pennsylvania: Scott Perry, Keith Rothfus (the only two Pennsylvania R’s to vote no; isn’t some of this money going to Pennsylvania?!)

South Carolina: Weirdly, the one GOP freshmen, Tom Rice, was the only Republican of the whole state delegation (five total) to vote yes. They’ll learn ’im yet, I reckon!

Texas: Randy Weber, Roger Williams

Well, there you are. The most ignominious entry onto the national stage that i can think of in recent history. Congratulations one and all.