Republican says fellow GOP lawmakers blocking disaster aid are 'clowns'

Rep. Austin ScottJames (Austin) Austin ScottHouse approves much-delayed .1B disaster aid bill Third House Republican blocks disaster aid bill Republicans turn on each other amid disaster bill delay MORE (R-Ga.) on Tuesday harshly rebuked members of his own party who are blocking the quick passage of a disaster aid bill, calling them "clowns."

Scott's condemnation came shortly after Rep. Thomas MassieThomas Harold MassieAirports already have plenty of infrastructure funding Overnight Defense: House votes to block Trump arms sales to Saudis, setting up likely veto | US officially kicks Turkey out of F-35 program | Pentagon sending 2,100 more troops to border House votes to block Trump's Saudi arms sale MORE (Ky.) became the latest Republican to prevent the $19.1 billion disaster aid bill's passage by unanimous consent during a House pro forma session.

"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 TrumpDonald John TrumpO'Rourke: Trump driving global, U.S. economy into recession Manchin: Trump has 'golden opportunity' on gun reforms Objections to Trump's new immigration rule wildly exaggerated MORE will sign it. #GA08" Scott tweeted.

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Lawmakers are back in their districts this week for the Memorial Day recess, meaning a roll call vote on the disaster relief measure isn't likely to happen until they return to Washington next week.

Scott and other Georgia lawmakers are pushing for swift passage of the disaster relief measure. The package includes language authored by Scott and Rep. Sanford Bishop (D-Ga.) to ensure $3 billion in relief for agricultural producers affected by Hurricane Michael and other natural disasters.

Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) also admonished Massie on Tuesday, tweeting, "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."

Before Massie, freshman Rep. Chip RoyCharles (Chip) Eugene RoyGOP lawmaker blasts Omar and Tlaib: Netanyahu right to block 'enemies' of Israel The Hill's Campaign Report: 2020 Democrats step up attacks ahead of Detroit debate Conservatives call on Pelosi to cancel August recess MORE (R-Texas) objected to passing the legislation during a pro forma session last Friday with only a few other members and staff on hand.

Scott also went after Roy on Friday, writing in another tweet, "While political games over disaster assistance continue as a Member from TX blocked a package from getting to @POTUS desk today, one thing is clear: This bill has broad support & will advance when the House reconvenes & will be signed into law by POTUS the first week of June."

Massie on Tuesday objected on the grounds that such a bill should get a roll call vote instead of passage in a pro forma session with few people present.

"If the Speaker of this House felt that this was must-pass legislation, the Speaker of this House should have called a vote on this bill before sending every member of Congress on recess for 10 days," Massie said on the House floor.

Roy, meanwhile, also objected to the lack of $4.5 billion in funding requested by the Trump administration to address the flow of migrants at the southern border.

"The American people are working. We should, too. For the second time, @SpeakerPelosi tried to jam through a $19 billion bill that is not paid for without members present. The American people deserve to know how their reps vote," Roy tweeted on Tuesday in support of Massie.

Other Republicans representing states affected by recent natural disasters have pushed back against Roy and Massie.

Rep. Kay GrangerNorvell (Kay) Kay GrangerLobbying world House approves bill increasing federal worker pay House approves 3 billion spending package MORE (Texas), the top Republican on the House Appropriations Committee, called Roy's move last week a "political stunt." She noted that the disaster aid package includes more than $4 billion in Community Development Block Grant funding for Texas.

"As Republicans and as conservatives, we believe that there is no more important function for the federal government than to be there during disasters," Granger said in a statement.

The Senate passed the bill 85-8 last Thursday, but by then the House had already left for the recess.

President Trump is expected to sign the disaster aid package once it reaches his desk.

Senators moved quickly to pass the bill once they reached a deal with Trump, who had also resisted additional funding for Puerto Rico's hurricane recovery efforts. But the package includes $600 million in nutrition assistance for Puerto Rico as well as $5 million for a study of the disaster nutrition assistance provided to the island territory in 2017.