Bernie Sanders, 4 GOP Senators Threaten to Block Coronavirus Relief Bill

At a press conference Wednesday, four Republican senators Lindsay Graham, Tim Scott, Ben Sasse and Rick Scott said they hoped an amendment could be passed that would limit unemployment benefits to 100 percent of a worker’s salary.

The final details of the bill have yet to be released but Senate negotiators came to an agreement overnight that includes an additional $600 per week payment to each recipient of unemployment insurance. The benefit also extends to those who typically do not qualify, such as gig economy workers, furloughed employees and freelancers. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D), said the boost “ensures that laid-off workers, on average, will receive their full pay for four months.”

Following that announcement, Bernie Sanders made one of his own, “Unless Republican Senators drop their objections to the coronavirus legislation, I am prepared to put a hold on this bill until stronger conditions are imposed on the $500 billion corporate welfare fund.”

Graham shot back with a pair of Tweets saying, “only in Senator Bernie Sanders world does it make sense to pay people more NOT to work than TO work. I am all for making peoples salaries whole. However, I am not for increasing people’s salary through the unemployment insurance system.” He continued, “This proposal will make it hard for our employers to maintain their workforce, particularly in the area of healthcare, thus, significantly delaying the economic recovery and impairing our health and safety. Simple Fix: Cap unemployment benefits at full salary before the crisis.”

All of this back and forth caused stocks to tumble into the close. The Dow was up only 480 points after surging 1,300 earlier, but finished positive on back to back days for the first time since February while the Nasdaq turned negative.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *