Hurricane Irma Forces House Vote Cancellations

Citing absences, leadership postpones votes until Tuesday

A radar image shows Hurricane Irma, a Category 5 storm, making its way through the Atlantic Ocean. Projections have it affecting Florida this weekend. (NOAA image via Wikimedia Commons)
A radar image shows Hurricane Irma, a Category 5 storm, making its way through the Atlantic Ocean. Projections have it affecting Florida this weekend. (NOAA image via Wikimedia Commons)
Posted September 10, 2017 at 4:43pm

The House has canceled Monday votes, with leaders citing the large number of absences by lawmakers who are staying home in their districts because of Hurricane Irma.

The chamber will instead begin debating suspension bills on Tuesday and then resume debate on an omnibus appropriations package for fiscal 2018, according to a release from the office of House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy

First votes on Tuesday are scheduled for 6:30 p.m., as previously scheduled. The chamber is still expected to wrap up its work week in Washington on Thursday.

Depending on the severity of the damage, though, the schedule could continue to change.

“We will continue to monitor the situation and send further updates as needed,” Sunday’s schedule statement from House Republican leaders concluded. 

The Senate is still scheduled to be in session Monday, coming in at 3 p.m., and will debate the defense authorization bill, which sets policy for the Pentagon and related programs.

Several lawmakers, particularly from the Gulf Coast area, left Washington early last week to be in their districts ahead of Irma’s path. Congress last week approved a $15.25 billion aid package for victims of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which President Donald Trump signed into law Friday.