McConnell Slams Delay in COVID Relief Bill: 'Some Have Died While Needless Political Games Have Played Out'


Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is blasting the months-long delay in passing a COVID-19 relief package and vowing that lawmakers will stay in the nation’s capital until a bill is passed.

During a speech on the Senate floor on Thursday, McConnell argued the country “needs Congress to come through with another targeted rescue package.”

Congress passed the $2 trillion CARES Act in March, and since then, lawmakers have struggled to reach a deal on another massive relief packaged. 

“They’ve waited months. They’ve waited and suffered. And some have died while needless political games have played out,” McConnell said, adding, “The American people’s wait for more emergency assistance ought to be over.”

He went on to noted that he has been for a “targeted” relief package that would provide funds for the Payroll Protection Plan, vaccine development and distribution, coronavirus testing, money to help schools reopen safely, and an extension of the enhanced unemployment benefits.

Lara Trump Breaking Into Country Music With Cover of Iconic Song

“I’m encouraged that our Democratic colleagues have now embraced this framework. It’s been the right solution for our country all this time. And a bipartisan, bicameral agreement appears to be close at hand,” he added.

The current proposal, McConnell said, would provide funds for more PPP, vaccine distribution, coronavirus testing, money for schools, and an extension of enhanced unemployment benefits. 

He added that “at the particular urging” of President Donald Trump and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Congressional leaders are negotiating another round of direct payments similar to the one sent out under the first CARES Act in March.

Watch the video below:

Additionally, he said the bill would “re-purpose more than $400 billion in unspent funds” from the first CARES Act. He said, “It turns out these funds did not need to be tapped to restore basic stability to our economy.”

Finally, he said he is “heartened” by the negotiations and believes that both sides are working toward a “shared goal” of passing a relief package, and urged negotiators to not “lapse into politics.”

He added that senators will stay in Washington, D.C., “until we’re finished… even if that means working through the weekend.”

Lawmakers were reportedly getting close to making a deal on a roughly $900 billion relief as they face a Friday deadline. The bill would reportedly include $600-$700 stimulus checks, aid to small businesses, funds for vaccine distribution, and an extension of enhanced unemployment benefits.

Biden Mentions 'Freedom' When Talking About Vaccine Mandates, Asks 'How About Patriotism?'

Additionally, The Washington Post reports the bill includes a $25 billion provision that would provide assistance to renters to help with past or upcoming payments and other expenses.

Democrats have been pushing for aid to state and local governments, something Republicans have rejected. And Republicans have been pushing for a bill that includes liability protection for businesses.

However, recent reports suggest the final bill will be a compromise that will likely not include liability protection or aid to state and local governments. 

Democrats have reportedly been more willing to forgo some of their desired provisions after President-elect Joe Biden won the election, hoping to pass another package early next year.

Biden call called the reported bill “an important down payment on what’s going to have to be done beginning the end of January into February.”

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Comment Down Below