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Rep. Issa defends Speaker Boehner for halting Sandy relief vote

"The fact is the Speaker had no choice. Had we brought up a vote, marked it down to 20 or so, 27 billion, where it should be to provide the actual relief, the Senate wasn't there to take it, so effectively it wouldn't have become law and the Speaker knew it," said Issa on "Fox and Friends" Wednesday morning.

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Lawmakers from both parties were outraged at Boehner for declining to bring a $27 billion Sandy relief package, without spending-cut offsets, to the floor.

Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee Rep. Pete King (R-N.Y.) called on New Yorkers and New Jerseyans to stop donating to GOP members of Congress as a result of the halted vote.

"I'm saying right now, anyone from New York or New Jersey who contributes one penny to congressional Republicans is out of their minds, because what they did last night was put a knife in the back of New Yorkers and New Jerseyans. It was an absolute disgrace," said King on CNN.

Issa accused New York Sens. Charles Schumer (D) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D) of packing the Sandy relief legislation with "pork."

"The Speaker made the right decision, which was if the Senate wasn't going to be there to concur with the essential dollars that should have been sent, then there was no pint in asking people to take a divided vote for the second time in a night for no particular benefit. The fact is the Senate didn't do their job. They sent us a bunch of pork and then left town," he said.

The California congressman predicted that the relief package will pass at the $27 billion level, otherwise it would not have his support.

The Speaker's office said that Boehner is "committed" to passing the relief bill in January.

Issa, who voted against the tax deal to prevent going over the so-called "fiscal cliff" Tuesday night, said he would also continue to support Boehner, despite the Speaker's move in favor of the bill.

"He had tough situation, one in which America was saying, 'you lead the entire House.' Understand, Republicans weren't with him, but the House was. ... The Speaker showed leadership at a time in which [Senate Majority Leader]Harry Reid went home and went to bed and left it to the vice president. At least Speaker Boehner was always straight, honest with us," he said.

Boehner voted in favor of the legislation, a split from House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) who voted against the measure.

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