Updated: 03/18/2020, 4:19 p.m ET: According to The Hill, despite Sen. Rand Paul’s best efforts to delay, the Senate has ultimately voted 90-8 to pass the Coronavirus bill and has sent it to President Trump for approval. The bill includes enhanced unemployment protections and provides free testing for COVID-19. Paul’s amendment was rejected in a 3-95 vote.
You would think that during the time of an unprecedented crisis politicians would be able to prioritize getting things done efficiently. Leave it to Sen. Rand Paul(R-Ky.) to stay on his bullshit.
Sen. Paul has delayed a vote on a package of coronavirus measures that are urgently needed. Paul has introduced an amendment to the package and is forcing a vote on it that is almost certain to go nowhere. The package included free coronavirus testing, unemployment protections, increased Medicaid funding and food security measures.
According to NBC News, Paul’s amendment would “require a social security number for purposes of the child tax credit, and to provide the President the authority to transfer funds as necessary, and to terminate United States military operations and reconstruction activities in Afghanistan.”
In other words, shit that can wait.
It’s amazing that as a pandemic spreads through the country putting countless Americans at risk, Paul sees fit to slow the response. We don’t have time to waste, this is not politics as usual. People will die if free, efficient testing isn’t provided, and millions of Americans are facing the loss of jobs and hours. Afghanistan can fucking wait, my guy. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) was also big mad about the situation, saying on the Senate Floor “In a time of national emergency this Republican amendment is ridiculous, a colossal waste of time. We probably could have voted on this bill a day or two ago if not for the need to schedule this amendment.”
I feel ya, Chuck.
The Senate was initially set to vote on the package Tuesday but Paul’s amendment resulted in the vote being delayed until Wednesday. If this is going to be how the politicians handle the situation then we might be in for a long ride.