Tragically for our nation, today's GOP is more concerned with rejecting Democratic proposals than with helping Americans in need. — Dean Obeidallah
Tragically for our nation, today's GOP is more concerned with rejecting Democratic proposals than with helping Americans in need. — Dean Obeidallah
House Republicans callously turn their backs on Americans in need
The reasons given by the House Republicans for their rejection of the bill combine so much of what we've come to expect from today's GOP, namely lies and hypocrisy. House minority leader Kevin McCarthy summed up the party line when he falsely declared on Fox News that, "This is supposed to be a Covid bill. Only 9% of it goes to Covid." This baseless 9% claim was repeated by numerous other House Republicans to justify callously turning their backs on Americans in need.

McCarthy and these other Republicans must know that the 9% number is a lie given that fact checkers ripped it to shreds as misleading in the days before Saturday's vote. These Republicans dishonestly claim that just 9% goes to fight the pandemic because only $160 billion of the $1.9 trillion package directly funds vaccinations, testing and other specific virus containment efforts. But every American needs to knows this bill also seeks to address the economic pain Covid-19 has wrought upon millions by including other healthcare spending like extending paid sick leave and subsidizing insurance coverage for those who've lost their jobs.

... Then there's the overpowering stench of hypocrisy emanating from the GOP's opposition to this relief bill by claiming it will add to the deficit. These included the same politicians who supported the 2017 GOP tax cut that is projected by the Congressional Budget Office to increase the national debt by $1.9 trillion by 2028. Alabama Republican Rep. Mo Brooks, for example, gleefully supported the 2017 cut but now opposes the Covid-19 relief bill because it's "a debt junkie."

While the Covid-19 relief bill is targeted to help Americans hit hardest by the pandemic, the 2017 tax cut helped the wealthy over the middle and lower class. In fact, by 2027 that GOP cut is expected to result in the top 1% receiving roughly 83% of the tax cut benefits if there are no changes to the law before then. This GOP boondoggle for the rich, which people like Rep. McCarthy sold to the American people with false statements like "every American" would get a tax cut if the bill is passed, also included other goodies for the wealthy such as raising the exemption for estate tax from $11 million to $22 million.

Why would Republicans oppose this desperately needed Covid-19 relief? It appears the Republican Party's own cold calculations have concluded that opposing this measure is good for them politically. Despite 68% of Americans supporting the Biden Covid-19 relief bill in a recent Quinnipiac poll, GOP House representatives apparently believe that their base would rather have the "red meat" of fighting Democrats than the actual red meat that this relief bill could provide them the funds to afford. Tragically for our nation, today's GOP is more concerned with rejecting Democratic proposals than with helping Americans in need.
Read the full article: https://www.cnn.com/2021/02/28/opinions/covid-relief-bill-gop-americans-in-need-obeidallah/index.html