Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw (TX) slammed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) for playing games with the coronavirus rescue bill.
In a video shared by the Daily Caller on Wednesday, Crenshaw accused Pelosi of holding up a $2 trillion stimulus package with partisan gamesmanship. The speaker has said that the House will pass the legislation by Friday, but she has faced criticism for pushing pet policy items that are wholly irrelevant to the pandemic.
“Democrats don’t like big business. Democrats, I don’t think, understand basic economics,” Crenshaw said.
Crenshaw slams Pelosi
The Senate passed a stimulus bill unanimously Wednesday after days of feverish negotiations. Democrats had previously rejected the proposed measure twice, saying it did too much for big corporations and not enough for working families, according to Fox News.
As the bill heads to the House for passage, Democrats are spinning the week of back-and-forth as necessary deal-making for the benefit of workers. But Republicans have said that Democrats instead held up desperately needed financial relief by using the negotiations to push for “woke” politics that have nothing to do with the pandemic.
Crenshaw slammed Democrats for trying to stuff the bill with unrelated material and said that Republicans included protections to ensure that corporate bailouts would not be abused, a sticking point for Democrats. Pelosi had sought collective bargaining rights for federal workers and environmental standards to fight climate change, he said, among other progressive wish list items.
“All of the protections were in there,” Crenshaw said. “What do they want in the bill? What’s their counter negotiation?”
House to vote Friday
The final bill excludes many of the things Pelosi wanted, but it does include, for example, $25 million for the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Fox News reported. The speaker and her fellow Democrats have argued that the protracted negotiations earned them hard-won concessions for workers, but Republicans have responded that the bill has changed little since the weekend, when a procedural vote failed.
“The fundamental portions of this bill [have] not changed since Sunday,” said Pelosi’s counterpart, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). “The only few additions were funding of things that had nothing to do with the coronavirus. Was that worth holding it up?”
The stimulus package — the most expensive in American history — includes direct payments to Americans and hundreds of billions to help businesses large and small, hospitals, and state and local governments, according to The Hill. It also increases unemployment benefits by $600 a week for four months, a stipulation that led to last-minute debate Wednesday evening between a group of Republicans led by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).
Pelosi plans to seek the bill’s passage in the lower chamber Friday by voice vote, which doesn’t require all members to be present, according to CBS News.
“We will have a victory tomorrow for America’s workers,” Pelosi said. “If somebody has a different point of view, they can put it in the record.”