Second Republican blocks disaster aid bill's passage in House

A second House Republican blocked passage of a disaster aid bill on Tuesday, increasing the odds that lawmakers will have to wait until the chamber reconvenes from recess next week to send the measure to President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrumps light 97th annual National Christmas Tree Trump to hold campaign rally in Michigan 'Don't mess with Mama': Pelosi's daughter tweets support following press conference comments MORE.

Rep. Thomas MassieThomas Harold MassieHillicon Valley: House passes anti-robocall bill | Senators inch forward on privacy legislation | Trump escalates fight over tech tax | Illinois families sue TikTok | Senators get classified briefing on ransomware House passes anti-robocall bill GOP lawmaker says newly-released Butina was jailed due to 'Russophobia' MORE (R-Ky.) objected to an attempt by Democrats to clear a $19.1 billion disaster aid package by unanimous consent during a pro forma session.

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Lawmakers first tried on Friday during another pro forma session to pass the legislation by unanimous consent, since most House members had left for the Memorial Day recess on Thursday.

But freshman Rep. Chip RoyCharles (Chip) Eugene RoyTrump says he will designate Mexican drug cartels as terror organizations Texas GOP rep predicts heavy Democratic presence in state ahead of 2020 Billboards calling on House Republicans to 'do their job' follow members home for Thanksgiving MORE (R-Texas) objected to its passage on Friday, citing the $19 billion price tag and lack of funds requested by the Trump administration to help agencies dealing with migrants at the southern border. 

During Tuesday's session, Rep. Sanford Bishop (D-Ga.) offered a request to pass the disaster aid package by unanimous consent, while Rep. Jennifer WextonJennifer Lynn WextonDemocrat unveils bill requiring banks to identify suspicious activity related to guns Newly-elected official feels 'stronger' than she did when she flipped off Trump's motorcade Ben Carson says political correctness will 'destroy our nation' when pressed on reported transgender remarks MORE (D-Va.) presided.

But Massie objected, saying Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Pelosi 'Don't mess with Mama': Pelosi's daughter tweets support following press conference comments Bloomberg: Trump should be impeached On The Money: Congress races to beat deadline on shutdown | Trump asks Supreme Court to shield financial records from House Democrats | House passes bill to explicitly ban insider trading MORE (D-Calif.) "should have called a vote on this bill before sending every member of Congress on recess for 10 days."

House Majority Leader Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton HoyerOvernight Health Care: House to vote next week on drug prices bill | Conway says Trump trying to find 'balance' on youth vaping | US spent trillion on hospitals in 2018 House to vote next week on sweeping bill to lower drug prices Congress races to beat deadline on shutdown MORE (D-Md.), who was also on the House floor, urged Republicans — without success — not to object.

"Millions of people are at risk," Hoyer said. 
The House is scheduled to reconvene on Thursday at 4:30 p.m. for another pro forma session, where Democrats plan to again try to pass the disaster aid bill by unanimous consent. But given the continued resistance from conservatives, it's more likely to be sent to Trump's desk by a roll call vote next week.
 
The House isn't scheduled to come back into session for roll call votes until next Monday, June 3.
 
Roy doubled down on Tuesday after facing blowback from fellow Republicans, including those who represent disaster-ravaged states, for blocking the legislation's passage. 

"Last Friday, the American people were at work on Friday. The House was on recess and @SpeakerPelosi tried to jam through a bill WITHOUT A VOTE that is $19 billion, not paid for, and without any effort to address the emergency border supplemental @RussVought45 requested," Roy tweeted.

Like Roy, Massie also quickly drew ire from his own party for blocking the bill's passage.

"This is yet another example of politicians putting their own self-interest ahead of the national interest. It’s pathetic that some members have chosen this moment to grandstand & get into the national headlines," tweeted Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.).
 
President Trump had objected to additional funding for Puerto Rico, but lawmakers reached a deal to include $600 million in nutrition assistance for the island territory in the disaster aid package.
 
The Senate then quickly passed the legislation 85-8 on Thursday before adjourning for the recess.

The package also includes $5 million for a study of the disaster nutrition assistance provided to Puerto Rico in 2017.

Beyond assistance for Puerto Rico, it further includes funding to address the effects of Hurricanes Florence and Michael, as well as recent wildfires. It also extends the National Flood Insurance Program through September. 

Fellow Republicans publicly panned Roy's move last week, including lawmakers representing areas that stood to receive disaster aid funding. Rep. Jody HiceJody Brownlow HiceGOP lawmaker calls impeachment inquiry a 'disaster' for American people House Republican: Impeachment vote timing 'up in the air' GOP Congressman weighs in on impeachment hearings MORE (R-Ga.) tweeted that "our farmers need aid today," while Rep. Austin ScottJames (Austin) Austin Scott5 Republicans who could replace Isakson in Georgia's Senate race Georgia GOP abuzz about Senate vacancy House approves much-delayed .1B disaster aid bill MORE (R-Ga.) lamented that "political games over disaster assistance continue."

Scott went after Massie on Tuesday as well, tweeting that "unfortunately, more clowns showed up today to once again delay disaster relief for the states and farmers devastated by the storms of 2018. This bill will pass the House next week, and President Trump will sign it. #GA08"

This report was updated at 3:23 p.m.