Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), a senator from a state hit hard by disaster in 2011, decried the House-passed pay-for legislation prior to its Senate vote. She argued that it would set a "disruptive and dangerous" precedent, forcing the Congress to pay for disaster releif in the same year a disaster occurs. There were also concerns within the Democratic caucus that Republicans were attemting to cut below the discretionary caps already ageed to in the summer's Budget Control Act.
The pay-for resolution, H.Con.Res. 94, was defeated 43-56, and would have amended the emergency relief bill by making an across-the-board 1.83 percent cut to most discretionary spending accounts in 2012.
Prior to that vote, the Senate cleared the actual disaster funding bill, H.R. 3672, by a 72-27 vote. That bill would provide for $8.1 billion in disaster relief funding, $6.4 billion of which would go to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
The bill cleared the House Friday evening 351-67 with only one Democrat and 66 Republicans who opposed the additional spending.