Senate Republicans, two- and- a- half months after House Democrats put forth their coronavirus relief bill, have belatedly announced their "opening bid," something they call the "Heals Act" (we gave it the appropriate spelling in the header). It's, as expected, a woefully inadequate response to the health and economic crisis their lack of leadership has foisted on America.
Here's the essence of the two bills:
Senate Republicans and administration officials on Monday unveiled a $1 trillion proposal, narrowly tailored to Republican priorities. It includes slashing by two-thirds the $600-per-week unemployment payments that workers have received since April and providing tax cuts and liability protections for businesses.
Just from that incomplete description, which bill do you think meets the needs of the moment and which does not? Which looks out for workers and families, and which looks out for donor and business interests? Which wants to protect public health, and which wants to protect the election prospects of Republican officeholders? Don't just take our word for it; check out this Public Citizen thread.House Democrats in May approved a $3 trillion relief package that amounts to their opening offer: a sweeping measure that contains a number of Democratic priorities, including an extension of the jobless aid, nearly $200 billion for rental assistance and mortgage relief, $3.6 billion to bolster election security and additional aid for food assistance.
Both bills would provide roughly $100 billion for education (although Democrats now want more based on the pandemic trend in the time their bill has been gathering dust on Moscow Mitch McConnell's desk). A crucial difference: the Republican bill would condition much of the relief to K-12 schools on their re-opening with in- person instruction. They've learned the art of extortion well from their crime family leader, haven't they?
That they wasted valuable time basically to come up with more tax cuts and liability protections for their donor class and less money and protections for workers reveals what they are and what they've always been: shitheels.
UPDATE: The "Shitheels Act" may already be dead... in Moscow Mitch's own caucus--
Senate GOPers leaving lunch w/ Mnuchin, Meadows:— Saleha Mohsin (@SalehaMohsin) July 28, 2020
“I’m not inclined to support it... it’s a mess" - Josh Hawley
"We are all scratching our heads" - Mike Braun
"The amount to be spent is a concern" - Lindsey Graham
A piecemeal deal is unlikely - Kevin Cramer
(Photo: The two main shitheels.)
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