Matt Gaetz Votes No On Relief Money As Florida Grapples With Hurricane Ian Aftermath

Florida native and lawmaker Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) voted against a measure to open up the Federal Emergency Management Agency to millions of dollars in disaster relief.

Gaetz was one of several House Republicans who voted against a resolution Friday to allow FEMA to use up to $15 million in the Disaster Relief Fund, Newsweek reported.

The bill ultimately passed both the House and Senate and awaits President Joe Biden’s approval.

The vote comes the same week Hurricane Ian killed dozens of Florida residents, flooded communities and destroyed homes and businesses.

Gaetz and other GOP lawmakers added their names to a letter that said they would do “whatever it takes” to stop funding the Biden administration, according to the news site.

“Any legislation that sets the stage for a ‘lame duck’ fight over government funding gives Democrats one last chance to pass this agenda,” the letter said.

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) walks down the House steps on Friday, Sept. 30, 2022.
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) walks down the House steps on Friday, Sept. 30, 2022.

Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Gaetz is no stranger to voting against hurricane relief, as the lawmaker did not vote for a $15 billion aid package when Hurricane Irma killed at least 92 people in the contiguous United States, it approached Florida in 2017, the Miami Herald reported.

Gaetz, however, approved a $7.5 billion hurricane relief bill earlier that week.

The $15 billion package was tied to a deal between Democrats and former President Donald Trump to raise the debt ceiling and fund the government through December 2017.

“Only Congress can find a way to turn a natural disaster into a trillion dollars in new spending authority,” Gaetz said at the time of the $15 billion package.

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