The largest conservative caucus in the House is sharing a new playbook with members outlining plans to fight back against President Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill by exposing all of the “liberal goodies” hidden within the package, according to a new report.
“The RSC is leading conservatives inside and outside the Beltway in opposition to this so-called ‘relief package.’ The more we learn about it, the worse it sounds,” Representative Jim Banks (R., Ind.), the chairman of the RSC, told Fox News. “That’s why we’ve put together a fact sheet to educate Americans exactly how their taxpayer dollars are being spent by Democrats.”
The conservatives are hoping to draw attention to a number of left-wing provisions, including mixed-status families with undocumented immigrants’ eligibility to receive $1,400 stimulus checks and Planned Parenthood’s eligibility to receive funds from the Paycheck Protection Program that are intended to aid small businesses.
Other areas of concern include nearly $600 million for additional emergency paid family leave for federal employees and U.S. Postal Service workers; subsidies and loan forgiveness to farmers and ranchers on the basis of race and ethnicity; allowing colleges with partnerships with Chinese-controlled companies and Confucius Institutes to receive COVID funding; and allocations of $50 million for environmental-justice-grant programs, which the RSC calls “a thinly-veiled kickback to leftist environmental groups.”
The memo draws attention to provisions in the bill that would extend PPP business funding to owners who could have a felony record, including “violent criminals,” and extend Medicaid eligibility for incarcerated inmates during the 30 days prior to their release.
The memo comes as the House Budget Committee is set to take up the 591-page COVID-relief plan on Monday, with a full House vote on the legislation possible later this week.
Meanwhile, Democrats have argued that Americans urgently need the economic relief offered in the bill, including an extension of the federal unemployment boost through August 29, increased from $300 per week to $400 per week as well as $1,400 stimulus checks to adults and their dependents. Individuals making less than $75,000 and married couples earning less than $150,000 would receive the full amount, after which the checks would phase out and cut off at incomes greater than $100,000 for individuals and $200,000 for couples filing jointly.
The Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program would also be extended from 24 to 48 weeks while the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program would extend from 50 to 74 weeks.