Republicans Fold On Disaster Aid

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WASHINGTON, D.C.: No more all-night vigils for the Democrats. They’ll be able to get some sleep now that both the House and Senate have overwhelmingly passed a stripped-down, White House-friendly version of the disaster relief bill, leaving Republicans to count their dead after yet another crushing public relations defeat at the hands of the Democratic minority. Said an exultant Kent Conrad, a Democrat from hard-hit North Dakota, of the bill that will provide $5.6 billion in aid for victims of disasters in 35 states: "Many of us wondered if this day was going to come, and here it is." Thousands of families bereft by flood damage can only echo his relief.