Senator Angus King criticizes colleagues for lack of action on additional relief package

Published: May. 22, 2020 at 5:36 AM EDT
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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Thursday, as the Senate finished its third week of session without taking a vote on further coronavirus relief, U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) released the following statement:

“Today, the Senate is adjourning after three weeks of session – and during that time, we’ve held over twenty votes on the floor, not a single one relating to the largest public health and economic threat we’ve faced in the last century: the coronavirus pandemic. Zero votes on legislation that could support our struggling healthcare workers, or help families and small businesses weather the economic slowdown, or provide aid to our states and localities facing budget shortages just as we need their services most. Zero votes on anything to confront this all-encompassing pandemic – for all that we’ve done, it’s like the Senate was never even here.

“You can call this lack of action many things – unacceptable, embarrassing, woefully inadequate – but somehow, none of these words seem like enough. Right now, I’m feeling a mixture of anger and sadness – because how on earth can we ignore this generational challenge so the Majority Leader can confirm some judges? The United States Senate has spent the last three weeks approving nominees, while people around the country are facing a crisis unlike anything we’ve seen in a century. The number of opportunities we’ve missed over the last three weeks are breathtaking, and people will suffer for this complacency.

“Every day we waste here is a day we leave healthcare workers and small businesses and working families without the tools and defenses they need against a historic, devastating pandemic. I strongly hope that when the Senate reconvenes, members will have heard similar frustrations from the people that sent them here, and do something that matters.”

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