After voting against the original superstorm Sandy relief bill, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) came to Wall Street recently to raise money—and Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) is howling mad.
“Being from New York we’re not supposed to be suckers,” King fumed to The New York Observer’s Politicker. “It’s bad enough that these guys voted against it—that’s inexcusable enough. But to have the (nerve) to come in and say, ‘We (double-crossed) you, now make us president?”
Well, I’m howling mad, too, congressman.
This kind of thing has been going on forever. Members of Congress trash the region on the floor of their chambers, then shuttle up to Manhattan to take in a Broadway show, eat like royalty and rattle their tin cups.
Wall Street, of course, is a metaphor. New York’s financial services industry is spread from lower Manhattan to midtown. But Rubio did in fact hit up Goldman Sachs, whose offices are downtown—not too far from the real Wall Street.
I would like the think that when he was in the neighborhood the senator took notice of the closed storefronts, chugging curbside power generators and reconstruction work in progress. The siege of Sandy is with us still in these parts—just as it is with the residents of Long Beach and Fire Island and the Rockaways and Staten Island.
And I would like to think the senator's visit was an educational experience—you know, something more than a perfunctory trip to the ATM.
But whatever: To all members of Congress who for months acted as if the northeast wasn’t worth saving, just be advised: Peter King is watching you. And he's not happy.