Trump Administration Is Already Talking About Withholding Harvey Aid

On the National Day of Prayer, Donald Trump lashed out at South Korea and North Korea, while his administration wants Congress to attach aid for victims of Hurricane Harvey to a bill that would increase the federal debt limit. So, Trump is now at war with an influential group of House conservatives who have warned GOP leaders not to connect the two funding initiatives. This move might cause a looming conservative uprising. Usually, with Republicans, they want a debt limit increase tied to spending cuts but now, with an entire city underwater and thousands in shelters and at least 45 dead, Conservatives will have to battle it out.

On Sunday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that he and the former reality show star believe that raising the U.S. debt limit, which Congress must do within the next few weeks in order to avoid defaulting on its bills, should be tied to disaster relief funding for Hurricane Harvey.

“Without raising the debt limit I’m not comfortable that we’d get the money we’d need this month to Texas,” Mnuchin said on “Fox News Sunday.”

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin revealed the administration’s approach Sunday morning when he was asked whether the White House could guarantee that funding for the disaster would not be attached to the fight over the debt ceiling.

“No, I can’t. Quite the contrary,” Mnuchin said, adding, “The president and I believe that it should be tied to the Harvey funding.”

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Mnuchin warned of a delay in recovery funding for Texas if the debt ceiling is not raised, according to the Washington Post.

“Our first priority is to make sure that the state gets money, it is critical, and to do that we need to make sure we raise the debt limit,” he said. “Without raising the debt limit, I’m not comfortable that we will get the money that we need this month to Texas to rebuild.”

In 2011, congressional Republicans brought the country to the brink of default after refusing to raise the debt ceiling unless Democrats agreed to a series of future spending cuts. And now, Conservatives and Republicans will have to slap fight each other in order to get aid to Texas.


Featured image via Alex Wong/Getty Images