McHenry to Democrats: Work With Us to Provide Targeted Relief to Those Most in Need
February 26, 2021 -
Today, Republican Leader of the House Financial Services Committee Patrick McHenry (NC-10) testified before the House Rules Committee on President Biden’s “stimulus” plan. This partisan bill fails to target aid to Americans most in need and will not safely reopen our economy.
Watch Republican Leader McHenry’s remarks at the Rules Committee HERE.
Read Republican Leader McHenry’s remarks at the Rules Committee as delivered:
“Look, the Speaker of the House said the economic crisis is accelerating. Specifically, she said this to pass this mammoth spending bill.
“That quote is simply not true. The preferred narrative by my Democrat friends is simply not the case in America today. The statistics do not bear it out.
“The Congressional Budget Office projects the unemployment rate, which currently stands at 6.2 percent—which, by the way just as an aside, that is a lower unemployment rate than under President Obama’s first five and a half years in office—that rate will continue to fall this year and to reach its pre-pandemic size by 2022.
“And that’s without Congressional action. That’s without a cent more spent by Congress or additional changes.
“Additionally, personal income actually increased at the end of last year, and the personal savings rate stands at over 13 percent, a level not seen in four decades.
“The Bureau of Labor Statistics just updated these statistics this morning and, in their release, they said the personal savings rate is at 20.5 percent or nearly $4 trillion.
“That is the highest rate in quite a long time. The savings rate was 13.4 percent in December. These are significant, significant things. In fact, a 10 percent increase in personal income is directly related to the economy reopening and to the aid we provided last year in a bipartisan way.
“So, what I think we need is targeted, temporary relief, directly related to COVID.
“No one is arguing to do nothing. What we’re arguing for is to target that relief, not have a grab bag stimulus like 2009, which my Democrat friends have replaced the term ‘shovel ready projects’ with ‘COVID’ in order to pass a similar big spending bill.
“But look the facts don’t line up to the Democrats’ preferred narrative.
“To be clear, we know there are Americans still suffering. For a year now, we have been working to reach those in need and that’s who we should be focused on helping in this bill.
“Instead, we’ve used committee time and resources to debate a bill that only dedicates 9 percent of its $1.9 trillion price tag to actually combatting the virus, which we all believe we should do.
“Americans know this bill—this progressive payoff—can’t replace a steady paycheck and a return to in-person school.
“This bill is not going to safely reopen our economy. That’s going to be done by the American people and getting shots into arms. It won’t get Americans safely back to work, kids back in classrooms, or vaccines to our communities. Those funds were already put in place last year in a bipartisan way.
“During our markup in the Financial Services Committee, Democrats rejected nearly 40 amendments that would have made this bill better and more targeted—providing targeted aid toward communities who work to reopen their schools, getting vaccines out so businesses can reopen, and ensuring this relief is getting out the door now, rather than spending the money out over a decade when it’s no longer necessary or appropriate.
“Members of our committee, the Financial Services Committee, have submitted some of those amendments to the Rules Committee for your consideration. Chairman McGovern, the Democrat majority, and Ranking Member Cole, I believe that if President Biden is serious about working with Republicans, this Rules Committee can remedy the harm that was done in all of the referring committees to this reconciliation bill.
“We can truly have a bipartisan result if it is the will of the Democratic majority, if it is the will of President Biden and if they’re willing to actually work with us on providing temporary and targeted relief to those most in need.
“And so, with that, I urge the inclusion of our amendments and thank you.
“I yield back.”
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