As House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) continues to face bipartisan criticism for an impasse in her negotiations with the White House over a second round of coronavirus stimulus spending, her GOP counterpart in the Senate this week issued a stunning rebuke of her position.
As reported by Hannity, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) accused her of ensuring “that working families have gotten nothing — nothing — rather than something.”
“The difference it has made”
He addressed the current stalemate during remarks from the Senate floor on Wednesday. McConnell began by praising the CARES Act that passed earlier this year to provide a range of assistance to Americans struggling under the widespread economic shutdowns imposed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Every state, every town, every city knows the difference it has made,” he said, specifically recognizing the positive impact of the Paycheck Protection Program.
While that legislation sailed through on the strength of support by members of both parties, he said efforts to revive the PPP and pass a second bill have become mired in partisanship.
“The program is closed to new applications,” he said. “Many firms have run through their funds.”
McConnell noted that “for many workers, business has not come roaring back to normal — and it won’t until the health situation allows it.”
“That’s been their position”
As such, he pointed to “bipartisan agreement that American workers still need help” and noted that “bipartisan infrastructure” already exists through which to provide that assistance.
“The PPP has been taken hostage,” McConnell concluded. “Just like the funding for safe schools, more funding for testing, more funding for vaccines, more funding for federal unemployment benefits, and commonsense legal protections that charities and university presidents have been pleading for.”
Along with Pelosi, he blamed Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) for the deadlock.
“The Democratic leaders have spent months holding out for a long far-left wishlist of non-COVID related priorities and obstructing any additional aid until they get it,” McConnell said. “All or nothing. All or nothing. That’s been their position.”
Despite the backlash, an “optimistic” Pelosi said this week that Americans should expect to get some relief in the near term: “I want people to know help is on the way. It will be bigger, it will be better, it will be safer and it will be retroactive.”