(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. House passed the first installment of emergency disaster aid for victims of Hurricane Sandy after harsh criticism of House leaders by fellow Republicans including New Jersey Governor Chris Christie for delaying a vote.

The 354-67 vote allows the government flood insurance program to continue paying damage claims to about 120,000 policyholders. The measure, raising the program’s borrowing authority by $9.7 billion, needed a two-thirds supermajority to pass under fast-track procedures. The Senate probably will clear the measure later today.

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