McConnell Supports NDAA, Opposes Pelosi Plan for “Socialism for Rich People”
' Democrats took President Trump’s suggestion and skewed it so the checks would benefit even more high-earning households. Imagine a family of five where the parents earn $250,000 per year and have not seen any income loss this past year. Speaker Pelosi and Senator Sanders want to send them $5,000 from Uncle Sam. They make a quarter of a million dollars; nobody’s out of work; but our so-called progressive friends say that household needs, quote, ‘survival checks.'
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding NDAA and COVID-19 relief:
“Yesterday, the Senate was finally able to proceed to this year’s National Defense Authorization Act.
“A few of our Democratic colleagues have pulled out all the stops to hold back this crucial bill. But last night, a big, bipartisan majority of 80 Senators voted to proceed.
“There should be nothing controversial about giving our brave men and women in uniform the tools and training they need to stay safe.
“There should be nothing controversial about continuing the work of rebuilding and modernizing our capabilities. It should be a nonpartisan proposition that America should keep pace with Russia and China rather than slip behind.
“We have enacted an annual NDAA for 59 straight years and counting. In the next few days, the easy way or the hard way, we’re going to do our job once again. This body will fulfill our responsibility to the men and women who protect our country.
“The Senate will be here until we finish this bipartisan legislation.
“Now, for several days, we’ve heard some Senators say Congress must send more cash to high-earning households who haven’t seen any income disruption during COVID-19.
“Our colleagues who purport to be the champions of vulnerable Americans now say that what struggling people really need is for Congress to stop focusing on targeted relief for them specifically, and to instead send thousands of dollars to people who don’t need the help.
“Experts from across the political spectrum agree that our colleague from Vermont is dead wrong on this.
“Socialism for rich people is a terrible way to help the American families that are actually struggling.
“Let me say that again. Borrowing from our grandkids to do socialism for rich people is a terrible way to get help to families who actually need it.
“Washington Democrats took President Trump’s suggestion and skewed it so the checks would benefit even more high-earning households.
“Imagine a family of five where the parents earn $250,000 per year and have not seen any income loss this past year. Speaker Pelosi and Senator Sanders want to send them $5,000 from Uncle Sam.
“They make a quarter of a million dollars; nobody’s out of work; but our so-called progressive friends say that household needs, quote, ‘survival checks.’
“In fact, they believe a family of five should have to earn $350,000 before the spigot of government money would stop entirely.
“Socialism for rich people. That’s what Speaker Pelosi and Senator Sanders have sketched out.
“A terrible way to help those who need it.
“And experts across the political spectrum agree.
“The liberal editors of the Washington Post have blasted so-called progressives demanding a non-targeted giveaway that would ‘huge amounts’ to ‘perfectly comfortable families.’
“Larry Summers, who ran the Treasury Department for President Clinton and the National Economic Council for President Obama, says there is ‘no good economic argument’ for more non-targeted checks with no linkage to need.
“The liberal New York Times reported this morning that ‘a majority’ of the households that get non-targeted checks do not end up spending them on urgent needs, but rather, just add to their savings. ‘We know where the pockets of need are,’ said one economist, and ‘putting [money] there would be a much more efficient use.’
“Fortunately, though some of our colleagues seem to have forgotten, that is exactly what we did less than a week ago.
“It has been less than five days since President Trump signed into law another historic, bipartisan rescue package —targeted to Americans who actually need help.
“We passed an entire second round of PPP loans to save small business jobs, targeted to the hardest-hit.
“We renewed multiple kinds of additional federal benefits for unemployed workers, including an extra $300 supplement every week.
“There are billions for targeted food assistance. Billions for targeted rental assistance. And many billions of dollars for vaccine distribution, so we can finally beat this virus and reopen the economy in full.
“These are the kinds of targeted emergency programs that directly help the most vulnerable. And we just poured almost another trillion dollars into them, less than five days ago. Along with more direct checks that are already arriving in households’ accounts.
“That’s what we did less than five days ago.
“This crisis has not affected everyone equally.
“The data show that many upper-middle-class Americans have kept their jobs, worked remotely, and remained totally financially comfortable.
“On the other hand, some of our fellow citizens have had their entire existences turned upside down and continue to suffer terribly.
“We do not need to let the Speaker of the House do socialism for rich people in order to help those who need help.
“Our duty, both to struggling Americans and to taxpayers, is to focus on targeted relief that will have the maximum impact and help people who need help the most.
“That’s what the experts say we should do. That’s where there is broad, bipartisan support.
“And that’s exactly what we did less than one week ago when nearly $900 billion in more targeted relief was signed into law for our people.”