WASHINGTON – Today, House Committee on Small Business Ranking Member Steve Chabot (R-OH) spoke on the House floor in support of reopening the Paycheck Protection Program and sending help to millions of small business owners and their employees.
Remarks as prepared for delivery:
I thank the gentleman/gentlelady for yielding.
Mr./Madam Speaker, two weeks ago to the day, I spoke on this floor urging action on behalf of our nation’s 31 million small businesses. I said that there was no better way to celebrate Small Business Saturday than to deliver much-needed aid yet again to the small restaurants, manufacturers, and shops that have been hanging on by a thread.
That assistance comes in the form of the Paycheck Protection Program, or PPP. As I’m sure you’re aware, the program has supported over 50 million jobs across the country. That’s over 50 million people who didn’t have to worry about how they would pay their bills or support their families.
The program stopped accepting applications on August 8th but still had over $130 billion dollars remaining. Millions of small firms across the country have utilized the PPP program to keep their shops open, keep paying their employees, and keep serving their communities.
To me, it seems like common sense to open the program back up. After all, it was initially crafted in a bipartisan, bicameral manner and has proven overwhelmingly successful.
So I introduced a bill that would do just that and provide targeted assistance to small businesses that truly required help.
Unfortunately, Democrats have blocked efforts to even have a vote on that legislation 40 times.
As we all know, many small businesses are still uncertain about their future. Many are on the verge of closing their doors permanently. If that continues to happen, communities across our great nation will be devastated. I think that’s an urgent problem, and one that should have been addressed a long time ago.
It seems like Democratic leadership disagrees. Apparently, they feel it’s more urgent to vote on legislation about marijuana and tigers than help small businesses. Those may be their priorities, but they are not the priorities of the small businesses across the country that can’t hang on much longer.
Today, if we defeat the previous question, we can restart and make improvements to the Paycheck Protection Program and finally get additional targeted relief to the small businesses that are counting on us.
I yield back.