Let’s run down several issues in order, shall we? In this post, Andrew Sullivan and Paul Krugman.
âMoney to rebuild New York? Sorry, no.â â from the column cited above. Now, everyone knows that a large sum of federal money has already been apportioned to New York City for recovery and rebuilding. So what can Krugman mean? Read the column again and youâll see thereâs no qualification here. He doesnât say âMore money to rebuild New York?â Or: âEnough money to rebuild New York?â Is Krugman unaware of the funding? Or is this simply a smear?
Now, strictly speaking, this may be hyperbole, since some money is being appropriated for New York City. But perhaps Sullivan hasn’t been paying very close attention to what’s taking shape on Capitol Hill.
After September 11th, President Bush pledged $20 billion in aid relief to New York. That’s the “money apportioned”. But over the last two months that money has been steadily whittled away. The New York delegation is now trying to secure roughly half that amount — and even that 50% of what they were promised counts various non-applicable expenditures. (Bush says they’ll get the rest — next year.)
(It’s actually an astonishing story – one that’s gotten relatively little attention outside New York – and a stunning broken promise. But, hey, the Sunbelt is in the saddle. So what can you do?)
Anyway, $20 billion was what Bush himself thought was necessary to rebuild New York. He and Hill Republicans are now unwilling to spend that money. Why? Because of the budget squeeze created by the tax cut. Simple as that.