Statement by Rep. Daniel Webster on the READ Act
September 8, 2017
“Today, the House passed H.Res. 509, providing $7.85 billion in disaster relief for those impacted by Hurricane Harvey. A three-month funding resolution and increase in the debt ceiling was also included as a result of a deal struck by President Trump with Senate Leadership, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. Had I been in DC I would have voted against this bill.
“On Wednesday, I supported the original House bill to provide Hurricane Harvey relief funding before returning to Florida to assist with disaster preparedness in advance of Hurricane Irma. Americans always stand beside our fellow citizens in the wake of natural disasters.
“I believe we need to cut spending, balance the federal budget and reduce our debt. However, no such proposal for this fiscal year has been proposed and until one is passed we are doomed to continue borrowing and meeting our debt obligations. Raising the debt ceiling allows federal leaders to meet these obligations, thereby preventing default or risking a downgrade in our credit rating, which would lead to increased interest rates on our already staggering debt.
“The American people demanded that both the White House and this Congress keep the promise of bringing fiscal responsibility to our government. We had nine months to scrutinize the performance of government programs, develop and pass an appropriations bill that would responsibly spend taxpayer dollars. Yet here we are with another Continuing Resolution that keeps the spigot of government funding flowing and allows agencies to follow their own path independent of proper congressional oversight. For this reason, I would have voted against the bill.