According to this AP report, the Senate is now proposing $35 billion in cuts to pay for Katrina relief, and the House has upped their proposal to $50 billion. Nice work.

But, I guess it was only a matter of time before someone started to defend this pork. has stepped up to the plate. My wife (yes, she’s a member) received an email today asking recipients to call their lawmakers to protest the proposed spending cuts. Here’s an excerpt:

Just 6 weeks after Hurricane Katrina, top Republicans are exploiting the cost of the tragedy to push forward a budget plan calling for $50 billion in permanent cuts to vital services for the poor and middle-class, while handing out $70 billion in tax breaks — largely for the wealthy.

The budget fight begins this week, starting with the proposed cuts to services like Medicare, Medicaid, pension insurance, and student loans. In the next few days, Congress will make decisions dramatically affecting millions of the most vulnerable Americans. They must know their constituents are watching.

Here’s a list of some of the proposed cuts. I’m pretty sure the $6 million saved by cutting the “Jobs in the Woods Program” won’t be hurting any “vulnerable Americans.” Some treehuggers? Perhaps.