Mike Pence has made known his opinion on Nancy Pelosi’s blueprint for the next coronavirus bill.
In an exclusive interview with Breitbart, Pence gave a glimpse into the GOP’s thinking as Democrats charge ahead with a $3 trillion proposal that Republicans have pointedly dismissed. Stressing the need to help American families, the vice president put an emphasis on bringing the economy back to life with tax cuts and liability protections for businesses large and small.
“Generating economic growth”
Pelosi passed the HEROES Act through the House earlier this month, according to NPR, but Republicans immediately shot it down in conjunction with the White House, declaring it an unfeasible bundle of far-left ideas that had no chance of becoming law.
While it remains unclear if and when Republicans will negotiate another bill, Pence said in his interview with Breitbart that President Donald Trump believes payroll tax cuts and capital gains tax cuts will help bring the economy back to life — and the vice president also highlighted the necessity of liability protections to shield companies from “frivolous” lawsuits, a sticking point for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
“The president believes that a payroll tax cut, which would increase the take-home pay of working Americans by 7.6% immediately and puts money in the pocket of working Americans, would have an enormously beneficial effect on generating economic growth,” Pence told Breitbart.
The former vice president noted that all Republican talks are “preliminary,” a nod to the Republican Party’s reluctance to spend trillions of dollars more on coronavirus relief. Republicans have little appetite to continue a glut of stimulus spending, insisting on the need to let previous legislation make an impact first.
Pence explained to Breitbart:
I would characterize the discussions as very preliminary because we’re still moving a lot of the resources that Congress has already approved out and literally hundreds of millions of dollars — billions of dollars — of support directly to families, directly to small businesses, resources to states not only to support state services, but first responders, as well as unemployment benefits and a whole range of resources we’ve made available to hospitals and health care facilities.
“Whatever it takes”
The ideas Pence mentioned are likely to get a chilly reception from Dems, who have generally dismissed tax cuts and liability protections as putting corporations before families, although Pelosi says there are no “red lines,” as Reuters has noted.
The Dems’ current proposal demands nearly $1 trillion in funding for state and local governments and various forms of financial relief, including direct stimulus checks and continued expansions to unemployment insurance.
Democrats say that Republicans are being irresponsible by refusing to pass the bill, but Pence told Breitbart that the president is prepared to do everything necessary to help Americans suffering through the crisis survive — adding that “we’ve got to have provisions that will promote economic growth and accelerate this recovery,” an acknowledgment that Republicans are looking at more than safety nets.
While Dems have marketed their bill as pro-worker, it contains obviously anti-worker proposals like stimulus checks for illegal immigrants, and Democrats on both the far-left and the middle have various issues with the proposal as well.
“I think as we go forward, the focus is going to be on the American people, on American families,” the vice president told Breitbart in his recent interview. “President Trump said it plainly: we’re going to do whatever it takes to get the American people through this. That’s the reason why the core of the CARES Act was direct payments to Americans, to every American family.”