The White House and Congress hope to be able to quickly adopt billions of dollars in aid for the victims of Hurricane Harvey, as the floodwaters began. This need for more funds for an emergency comes on the eve of an important budget debate.
US elected officials who resume their work on Tuesday after five weeks of vacation have two urgent problems: to approve the 2018 budget before the end of the month, or at least a temporary measure to avoid the closure of public services, and raise the ceiling of the debt to prevent default.
Before Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, it was expected that there would be an arduous debate between Democrats and Republicans, but also between Donald Trump and the leaders of his own party with whom he is delicate. But in the face of the disaster, there could be a rare moment of unity to quickly give FEMA, the federal emergency agency, with the financial help it needs right away.
President Trump should ask Congress nearly six billion. The Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, announced that a text was being prepared for the first allocation of an unspecified amount, pending a broader assessment.
The memory of Sandy
The governor of Texas estimates that 125 billion will be needed for reconstruction. The hard right, which wants to cut, the deficit might waver: some parliamentarians and politicians on the east coast also remind that the two senators from Texas who today ask for federal aid had refused it in Hurricane Sandy in 2012.