Republicans in the House of Representatives and U.S. Senate agree with their Democrat counterparts that the Federal Emergency Management Agency needs more money to handle disaster relief this year. In both houses, GOP leaders were ready to pass a bill for that purpose.
But Democrat leaders balked - because the bill cut $1.5 billion from a loan program to encourage vehicle manufacturers to produce more fuel-efficient cars. In the end, the measure passed.
This is typical liberal politics, but in this case it threatens to cut off funds FEMA needs to help tens of thousands of disaster victims. Because of a shortage of funds, FEMA already is holding up some relief projects.
Clearly, the loan program for automakers is part of the liberals' campaign to change market dynamics. Instead of building cars Americans want, the liberals want automakers to build the "green" vehicles President Barack Obama desires.
All three U.S. vehicle manufacturers - General Motors, Ford and Chrysler - appear to be recovering from the recession. They would do quite nicely without the loan guarantees and the accompanying small-car mandates from Washington. Both should be abandoned.