Pelosi, Schumer Urge GOP to Stop the 'Political Posturing' on Coronavirus Relief Bill


As Congress begins debating another coronavirus relief bill, Democratic leadership is accusing Republicans unnecessarily delaying it.

In a joint statement released on Monday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) called for lawmakers to “get serious” and work to pass a new relief bill to help families and small businesses.

“Small businesses, hospitals, frontline workers, and state and local governments across the country are struggling to keep up with this national crisis,” the statement read. “They need more help from the federal government, and they need it fast – our nurses, doctors and health care workers need it as much as anyone else.”

Pelosi and Schumer said that President Donald Trump’s administration is struggling to “figure out how to distribute the funds provided for in the CARES Act.” In the meantime, they said, “It’s clear that those appropriated amounts will not be enough to cover the tremendous need.”

While the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is popular, the two leaders cited reports that small businesses have been running into trouble trying to get loans from big banks.

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“Further changes must also be made to the SBA’s assistance initiative, as many eligible small businesses continue to be excluded from the Paycheck Protection Program by big banks with significant lending capacity. Funding for COVID-19 SBA disaster loans and grants must be significantly increased to satisfy the hundreds of billions in oversubscribed demand,” the statement added.

Finally, they called for increased funding for the production of coronavirus tests and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), “We Democrats demand adequate funding for the production and distribution of national rapid testing and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – it cannot wait.”

They also demanded “collection and publication of demographic data” to help “accurately determine the level of impact on under-served communities.”

And they blasted Republican lawmakers for, as they said, “political posturing” and introducing bills that “they know will not pass either chamber.”

“We have real problems facing this country, and it’s time for the Republicans to quit the political posturing by proposing bills they know will not pass either chamber and get serious and work with us towards a solution.”

The two Democratic leaders are not the only ones accusing lawmakers of holding up relief for political purposes.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has accused Democrats of trying to hold American workers’ paychecks “hostage.”

On Thursday, McConnell tried to pass a bill that would have allocated $250 billion more to the PPP by unanimous consent. But, Democrats blocked the move and sought more funds for hospitals and small businesses.

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