After weeks of fighting over what should and shouldn’t be included in the upcoming, $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package, Republican leaders are still extremely unhappy with the amount of money that will ultimately be used for items that aren’t related to the pandemic or public health in general.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) made that point crystal clear in a blistering Fox News op-ed, calling the bill nothing more than a “Pelosi Payoff” and suggested that it is not, in fact, a rescue or relief package.
McCarthy went over some of the finer points of the massive bill in his op-ed, highlighting sections that many believe are nothing more than juicy, pork-like additions to drum up support from their constituents.
“When you add it all up, the price tag of Democrats’ bill is jaw-dropping. At $1.9 trillion, it is the single most expensive bill in history. But don’t call it a rescue or relief bill. Call it a Pelosi Payoff,” McCarthy wrote.
The California Republican revealed that a mere nine percent of the bill’s funding will actually go toward funding public health while adding that the bill “is not a serious attempt to fix the real problems of the American people.”
He chose a specific example in the bill that allows for a staggering $100 million to be used to build a tunnel just outside of Pelosi’s district while calling out other “pet projects” like giving Planned Parenthood $50 million in funding and bizarre language that could give U.S. government employees up to $21,000 each in stimulus money, compared to the $1,400 that a majority of Americans will receive.
McCarthy then took a hard jab at President Joe Biden for his failure to fulfill a promise of working across party lines. “After claiming on the campaign trail that he would be a ‘President for all Americans,’ President Biden has made zero attempts at bipartisanship,” he wrote.
It gets worse
One of the hardest-hitting issues facing Americans nearly a year into the pandemic is the controversy over the reopening of schools and getting children back into the classroom. With total funding of $1.9 trillion, one would think that a chunk of that money would be used to provide the resources schools need to reopen, which has been one of the reasons why so many districts argue that they have to remain closed.
Instead, McCarthy pointed out that only five percent of the money set aside in the bill for schools is scheduled to be spent in 2021, which he argued would once again leave students and parents in a state of limbo as millions of students face new struggles as a result of being out of the classroom for so long.
“Democrats repeatedly voted against requiring in-person learning as a condition of funds to states. Worried parents are right to wonder why. Public school students are living through an education crisis, yet Democrats would rather pay off their political allies than address what could be the biggest failure of our lifetime,” he said.
The Republican lawmaker didn’t excoriate Pelosi and her Democrat colleagues without providing a solution to what he believes is a disastrous, overly-expensive bill. He stated what many other high-profile politicians have previously said: The best relief and rescue plan for America is eliminating the “non-scientific lockdowns” and finally re-opening the entire country.
Only time will tell if the bill manages to make it all the way through Congress and onto the president’s desk, but this is a prime example of why members of Congress continually poll so low, as they always seem to make their own interests a priority over We The People.