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Published On: Mon, Mar 23rd, 2020

Senate Democrats rally and block Coronavirus stimulus spending bill as 5 GOP Senators absent due to virus

Democrats blocked the $1.8 trillion stimulus spending bill to protect the U.S. economy and provide relief to American families who are suffering as a result of the Chinses Coronavirus outbreak.

“The fate of a sweeping government rescue package to prop up an economy devastated by the coronavirus pandemic was in limbo on Sunday after Democrats blocked action in the Senate,” The New York Times reported. “The 47-47 vote was a stunning setback for a package that was emerging as the largest economic stimulus measure in modern American history – now expected to cost $1.8 trillion or more.”

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Democratic senators argued that the GOP bill includes several “non-starters” and walks back areas of agreement, such as expanding unemployment insurance.

“We are pleading with McConnell not to call this vote,” Sen. Dick Durbin (Ill.), the No. 2 Senate Democrat, said. “It’s a serious mistake. We have not negotiated this to the point of agreement yet.”

Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Republican majority leader, said he was still hoping for a vote Monday on the proposal.

“It’s still some elbowing and maneuvering for room as you can imagine, but this is a pretty solidly bipartisan proposal agreed to by a lot of rank and file Democrats who were involved in drafting it,” the Kentucky Republican told reporters.

“At some point here, we’ll have to stop and that’ll be the bill we vote on and in my opinion that’ll be tomorrow.”

There are five GOP senators absent. Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.) announced Sunday morning he had tested positive for the coronavirus and would self-quarantine. That led to two Republican colleagues he had interacted with, Utah Sens. Mitt Romney and Mike Lee, announcing they would also self-quarantine and miss the vote.

Republican Sens. Cory Gardner (Colo.) and Rick Scott (Fla.) had previously said they would self-quarantine as a precaution that was unrelated to Paul’s announcement.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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