TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — In the wake of the Hurricane Ian, Florida’s two U.S. senators, Rick Scott and Marco Rubio, urged Senate leaders to provide federal relief for Floridians. Several Republican lawmakers from Florida previously voted against disaster relief aid.
Part of the disaster relief aid was tucked away in a short-term spending bill that would fund the government through December. The resolution passed the House and made its way to the Senate. Sen. Scott voted against the measure while Sen. Rubio did not attend the vote.
Florida Rep. Andrew Learned, D-Hillsborough, criticized the decision.
“Florida needs aid and we need it now. And the fact that our own senators are putting politics first is a nightmare,” Learned said. “If you’re the kind of person who puts politics ahead of people’s lives, then you end up with votes where you’re voting against your own state’s hurricane disaster relief, which is just shameful.”
Sen. Scott later defended the move saying the aid should be separate from the spending bill
“The federal government is a major partner in helping families, helping businesses, helping governments get back to – get back to normal. But you don’t want to waste money,” Scott told Chuck Todd on Meet the Press.
Despite the Florida lawmakers’ push back, president Biden signed the bill.
Senators Scott and Rubio have not yet responded to WFLA’s request for updated comments.