WASHINGTON D.C. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) is no fan of the $3.2 trillion bill passed mostly along party lines, with only one Republican, Peter King (R-NY) voting in favor.
Kennedy said on Thursday that Pelosi had overplayed her hand by passing the coronavirus bill without consulting Republicans in the House, Senate, or President Trump.
Nancy Pelosi, who pushed Congress to pass an 1800-page bill with only a few days to attempt to read it, with no committee review and now input from Republicans, is trying to run the House as a one woman show.
Based on another provision passed by Congress, so-called “proxy” voting, it only takes 22 members of the House to pass a bill.
“Never let a crisis go to waste,” eh Pelosi?
“Her bill is so grandiose. It’s not a coronavirus bill. It’s basically a ‘remake Western civilization’ bill,” the Senate Budget Committee member told Sean Hannity on Fox News.
— Truth to Power (@KennyD43) May 21, 2020
Kennedy took it further, saying that:
“I don’t think we are going to have a fifth bill,” Kennedy told Hannity. I’m not at all sanguine about the prospects. Some of my colleagues disagree with me, but I think it’s way less than 50 percent.”
Kennedy noted that Republicans were “shocked” when they saw the bill, amusingly referred to as the HEROES Act, noting that the bill had no chance of passing the senate.
In fact, Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Leader had previously said that the bill was “dead on arrival.” McConnell referred to it as a “parade of absurdities.”
Kennedy took it a step further, saying that Pelosi could cut out 75 percent of the bill, and Republicans in the Senate still wouldn’t vote for it.
“If she takes it back to the Ocasio-Cortez wing in the House, they’re not going to support it, so I think she overplayed her hand here,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy wasn’t the only member of the senate who slammed the bill. Newsweek reported Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) described the bill as a “fantasyland bill” that would help illegal “immigrants” more than American citizens.
On “America’s Newsroom” on Fox, Barrasso said that Pelosi is “actually making it easier for illegal immigrants to work in her $3 trillion bill, that fantasyland bill, than she is making it easier for the 36 million Americans out of work to get back on the job.”
“Those are the perverse incentives that she’s included in this liberal wish list,” he continued.
Among the provisions in the boondoggle bill are protections for illegal “immigrants” who work doing jobs that are deemed “essential,” a move that Republicans have declared is a backhanded attempt at “amnesty.”
It would also expand direct payment eligibility to illegal “immigrants” who pay taxes, a proposal that Barrasso said he is “100 percent” opposed to.
In the House, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy had previously accused the Democrats of “using this opportunity to enforce their socialism.”
“What is the bill that they just passed on Friday? Well, it’s about pot. It’s about prisoners. It’s about politicizing election law, prioritizing illegal immigrants and pensions,” he said in an interview with Fox News.
“These are all things that are socialist wish list that they’ve been trying to pass long before COVID ever came to this land.”
Among the provisions of the strangely named HEROES Act would see Americans receive a second individual stimulus check of $1200, and up to $6000 for families. It would also earmark $1 trillion for states and municipalities.
The bill would also expand the $600 federal unemployment windfall, plus include $200 billion for hazard pay and $175 billion in rent, mortgage and utility relief.
Other measures would provide “expedited green cards” for migrant health workers and open up banking services to local cannabis businesses. Oh, and it would also provide $5 million for congressional tech equipment.
While Republicans have not completely ruled out providing some additional relief to the American people, they have suggested a time out in doing so. McConnell suggested looking at measures that have already been introduced to be further evaluated before further action.
Democrats of course are trying to press Republicans to act. However, if they were serious about helping Americans and small businesses impacted by the nationwide lockdown, in many cases forced to do so by Democratic governors, they would have provided a clean bill.
Pelosi has urged Republican senators to “come to the negotiating table” to discuss further relief. It is interesting however that the Democrats were not interested in sitting down to negotiate prior to the presentation of the bill.
“Last week, the House passed The Heroes Act: honoring our heroic frontline workers with robust funding for state, local, tribal and territorial entities; funding a science-based path to safely opening the economy with testing, tracing, treatment and isolation; and putting more money in the pockets of workers,” Pelosi said in a statement.
“Leader McConnell and the Senate GOP need to come to the negotiating table to help deliver the relief that families desperately need.”
Newsweek reported that polling has shown that 82 percent of Americans feel further stimulus checks are needed. The poll was conducted by OnePoll. The methodology for conducting the poll was not provided.
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