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Hurricane Sandy now threatens the eastern seaboard of the United States. You can follow the storm here. As the storm disrupts the final days of the presidential election, it’s important to think about the candidates’ positions on disaster relief.

During the GOP primary, as the candidates pitted themselves against each other in a contest to see who could call for more austerity, Mitt Romney called the money the federal government spends on disaster relief “immoral”:

“We cannot — we cannot afford to do those things without jeopardizing the future for our kids. It is simply immoral, in my view, for us to continue to rack up larger and larger debts and pass them on to our kids, knowing full well that we’ll all be dead and gone before it’s paid off. It makes no sense at all”.

Of course the amount of money we spend on disaster relief –

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