Grassley: Time is Ticking to Pass Critical Coronavirus Aid Package
Prepared Floor Remarks by
U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa
Chairman, Senate Finance
Time is Ticking to Pass
Critical Coronavirus Aid Package
Monday, March 23, 2020
don’t have to tell you the stories of personal hardship and loss because of
serious health crisis is quickly becoming a serious economic crisis.
no fault of their own, American workers have been sidelined to fight the virus.
And the economy is unraveling.
hour, more people are being laid off.
hour, more businesses are closing their doors.
hour, families are being forced to figure out how they are going to pay the
is a crisis. But you wouldn’t know it by watching the Senate Democrats drag
their feet on much needed relief for Americans.
once, but twice now. They’ve filibustered a procedural vote just to allow us to
debate the relief package. It’s a package that we’ve been working on in a
bipartisan way for days now.
blocking a bill that includes relief that we all agree is needed for the
say this wasn’t a bipartisan effort. Really? Then who was I sitting across
from while negotiating around the clock for multiple days?
fact is that we worked with Democrats on this bill. We worked in good faith
together. And we included many provisions that they wanted.
fact, many of my colleagues on the other side have come down here today to brag
about the areas where we agree. These are provisions in this bill. But in the
same breath, they call this bill partisan. That makes no sense.
also claim that this bill contains so-called corporate bailouts and not enough
funding for workers and health care providers.
look at the facts:
bill would send $1,200 dollars to almost every American immediately.
would send $2,400 to couples. Families would get $500 for each child.
expands unemployment insurance for those who are laid off. It beefs up the
program with additional assistance and makes it available to more Americans
than ever before.
that’s just in the Finance Committee provisions.
also includes assistance for businesses of all sizes. It keeps them afloat so
folks have a job to go back to when we come out of this pandemic.
don’t try to say this bill doesn’t help workers.
bill also includes $100 billion for health care workers and helps to speed up
delivery of treatments and potential vaccines.
this bill also helps health professionals, too.
it helps nobody as long as the Congress sits on our thumb.
colleagues complain that this unprecedented aid package is not sufficient. It’s
approaching $2 trillion, but that’s not enough.
are saying it’s not enough help, so nobody gets any help.
don’t understand it. We passed Phase One two weeks ago. We passed Phase Two
last week. If we need Phase Four down the road, we can address it, but there’s
no excuse for not delivering what we can today.
the Democrats are playing politics while the rest of the country suffers.
you don’t think this is political, just look at the political wish list in the
want to erase the Postal Service debt.
want to require same-day voter registration.
want to saddle airlines with crippling new emissions standards.
want to resurrect the Green New Deal while families lose their incomes.
colleagues, now is just not the time. There will be plenty of opportunities to
debate these policies later. But not now.
a few days ago, our bipartisan talks were going very well.
made incredible progress over the course of a few days.
my Democratic colleagues: Please put your swords away. Please focus on the task
at hand. Please stop the delay tactics and politicking.
needs us to deliver. Now’s not the time for more foot dragging and procedural