Cantor to Missouri: Drop Dead. Again.

So a twister kills 117 people and takes out Joplin, Missouri. What’s the first thing that crosses Eric Cantor’s mind?

The No. 2 House Republican said that if Congress doles out additional money to assist in the aftermath of natural disasters across the country, the spending may need to be offset.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said “if there is support for a supplemental, it would be accompanied by support for having pay-fors to that supplemental.”

Ah, the cooler heads of fiscal responsibility in times of crisis. If you were wondering, Cantor’s the guy who worries about the water bill when the firetrucks pull up.

Eric Cantor: Disaster relief must be offset [Politico]

“They knew what they were signing up for when they bought their tickets. I say LET ‘EM CRASH.”

Oh dear FSM please, please, PLEASE let the Congressional Republicans balk at spending money on disaster relief. With lots of useful on-the-record sound bites that can be used in campaign commercials.

@Mistress Cynica: A disaster in a politically crucial swing state, no less. Where the local officials just announced that more than 1,500 people are missing and many of them feared to be dead.

Also, might want to think about about reconsidering the cuts to the National Weather Service.
I lived in Oklahoma for 20+ years, and I’ never saw people take a tornado watch as seriously as they are the one today. State government offices in OKC and most of the area colleges are closing at 4, with the big libraries (which have basements) staying open until the watch expires at 10 in case they’re needed for storm shelters. Librarians I know who are on the reference desk today say it’s been nothing but one tornado safety question after another. When I lived there, the sirens were your signal to run outside and see if you could spot the funnel. Even after the F5 in May of 1999 (43 killed) no one took it as seriously as they are in the wake of Joplin.

Sure, offset it by selling hunting licenses for the survivors. Entrepreneurs can sell tours of the disaster area for hunters who want to enjoy shooting at the survivors from helicopters. Win-win-win GOP thinking. I hope Pawlenty points to this proposal as an example of the GOP’s capacity for addressing urgent policy concerns while balancing the federal budget at his announcement press conference.

@Mistress Cynica: Considering this is the party that had a congressional delegation from a state vote against maintaining forecast quality, which later was ravaged by some of the worst tornadoes in history, nothing surprises me.

@FlyingChainSaw: Thank you for summing up the humanist POV so succinctly.

Tornados on the ground in central OK. My librarian friends tweeting from the universities note that the libraries (which have basement shelters) are letting people bring their pets.

@Mistress Cynica: Huge Storms. Hurricane Inhofe decimating OKC.

@Benedick HRH KFC: You know it’s bad when the guys at the National Weather Svc Severe Storms center in Norman hand off to an Air Force Base in Nebraska because they have to take shelter.

@Mistress Cynica: I read that the monster that took out Joplin was a mile wide.

@Dodgerblue: Mr. SFL’s mom was born and raised in Joplin. His grandparents are (were?) buried there. All family and friends have scattered to KC, St. Louis, Chicago, and father away, but it’s still a little weird to hear him say how he went to that hospital when he got pneumonia while visiting the grandparents when he was a kid, or pulling up pics of his mom’s childhood home on Google Earth.

@Mistress Cynica: The photos on CNN’s website of the OK tornado were crazy.

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