It seems Nancy Pelosi is losing her grip on Democrats: not even all of her own party members are on board with the House speaker’s lunatic $3 trillion coronavirus relief package.
Four Democrats who are vying to replace Republican Sen. Joni Ernst (IA) all rejected the Pelosi’s recent HEROES Act as a rough draft at best, The Washington Free Beacon reported Wednesday.
Iowa Dems reject Pelosi’s bill
Pelosi’s bill passed the House earlier this month, but it has little chance of passing the Republican-led Senate, whose leader, Mitch McConnell (R-KY), has no appetite for another costly stimulus package.
While Republicans have declared the bill “dead on arrival,” it has also taken heat from both the progressive and centrist wings of the Democratic Party, with critics arguing it either doesn’t do enough to protect working people, or that is too costly and impractical. Four Democrats fighting for Ernst’s seat, Eddie Mauro, Kimberly Graham, Theresa Greenfield, and Mike Franken, echoed those various points when asked about the bill during a virtual debate, as the Free Beacon reported.
“It’s not strong enough right now. If I’m a United States senator, I would make it stronger and then send it back over to the House,” Mauro said, according to the Des Moines Register.
Meanwhile, the progressive Graham, who supports the Green New Deal and universal health care, said the bill’s financial relief for Americans amounts to “crumbs” for working people. The bill looks to extend direct stimulus checks from the previous $2 trillion stimulus package, the CARES Act, and renew expansions to unemployment insurance, according to CNBC.
Greenfield, who is more moderate and the party favorite, expressed skepticism of the bill’s tremendous cost. “I certainly want to understand what’s all in that bill and how we’re going to pay for it,” Greenfield said, according to the Cedar Rapids-based newspaper The Gazette.
HEROES Act faces headwinds
At the core of the bill is nearly $1 trillion in financial relief for struggling state and local governments, but the bill has also been criticized for including stimulus checks for illegal immigrants as well as temporary protections from deportation, among other far-left provisions, as Fox News notes. It also mentions marijuana more times than jobs, according to the New York Post.
A number of centrist Democrats in Trump-won districts rejected the bill, no doubt wary of being branded with Pelosi’s progressive extremism.
As for Republicans, they have labeled the bill a “wish list” of progressive ideas that they’ve got no stomach for — just the latest such proposal from Pelosi, who Republicans have accused of taking advantage of the crisis to push for permanent changes that have nothing to do with the virus itself. Pelosi and her allies have said in response that there is no time to waste, and that Republicans are being selfish by refusing to pass it.
“Hunger doesn’t take a pause. People are jobless across America. That doesn’t take a pause. People don’t have enough money to pay their rent across the country,” Pelosi said earlier this month, according to CBS News.
But it looks like the bill would face headwinds in the Senate, as well — if it ever gets there.