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Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) today made the following statement after the Senate jammed through a partisan $1.9 trillion spending bill that, despite its name, was more focused on longstanding liberal policy priorities than COVID relief.

 

“Over the past year, Congress passed five bipartisan COVID relief bills on a bipartisan basis, totaling more than $4 trillion. We are fully capable of doing it again, and doing it quickly. Unfortunately, Congressional Democrats have opted to go it alone, and it’s come with a cost. The CARES Act, which delivered significant COVID relief in the early and uncertain days of this crisis, was developed, debated and passed in a matter of days. At best, the partisan process adopted by the Democrats is designed to take weeks. The 11 hours of Democrat infighting that kicked off the Senate’s debate on this bill is exhibit A why focusing on partisan priorities rather than consensus is ill-advised. All the while, Americans in need are left waiting.

 

“We could have delivered the same amount of COVID relief in half the time with a third of the cost to the taxpayer, and it would have been bipartisan. But the Democrats insisted on jamming through a partisan agenda untethered to real relief as Americans wait for help. That’s no way to govern,” Grassley said.

 

The spending bill passed the Senate by a partisan vote of 50-49.

 

During the course of the debate, Senate Democrats rejected a substitute amendment that would have delivered $650 billion in COVID aid for items with broad support like vaccine distribution, $300 unemployment supplements, aid to reopen schools, childcare assistance and economic impact payments targeted at those with need. They also opted to proceed with an $86 billion bailout for multiemployer pensions without any structural reforms to prevent future taxpayer-funded rescues, and blocked aid to Iowa farmers impacted by last year’s devastating derecho.

Author: Press Release