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Politics House GOP leader pumps brakes on follow-up to coronavirus relief package

22:15  26 march  2020
22:15  26 march  2020 Source:   thehill.com

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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) is throwing cold water on talk of moving forward with another coronavirus stimulus bill after the House passes a $2 trillion rescue package on Friday.

McCarthy told reporters Thursday that Congress should allow time for the existing three measures to play out before moving forward with more legislation to tackle the pandemic.

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His comments come as the House prepares to take up the Senate-passed $2 trillion economic relief bill, which leaders are looking to pass by voice vote.

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While critics of the bipartisan bill, like New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), argue the historic legislation doesn't go far enough to mitigate the financial fallout from the outbreak, McCarthy argued it's too early to cast judgment on that measure and the two that preceded it.

"I wouldn't be so quick to say you have to write something else. Let's let this bill work, just as long as we let the other two bills work as well. And whatever decision we have to make going forward, let's do it with knowledge, let's do it with the experience of what's on the ground at that moment in time," he told reporters.

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McCarthy noted the earlier legislation passed by Congress in response to the pandemic is just now starting to come into effect.

"Those are just now being implemented. Now you have more than $2 trillion going into the economy to the areas that we know are needed, and you're sitting here talking about needing another bill," he added. "If something is needed in the future, let's make that decision. But let's not make that decision without allowing these bills to be put into the economy."

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The GOP leader's stance on whether a phase four relief package is needed contrasts with Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-Calif.) position. The California Democrat told reporters on Thursday she expects the House to take the lead on constructing a fourth measure.

Pelosi said the "big four" - Pelosi, McCarthy, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) - should work to address worker protections, paid leave, food stamps, additional grants to the states and free medical treatment related to the coronavirus.

McConnell on Wednesday said the "Senate is going to stay nimble" in the event that additional legislative action is needed.

Kevin McCarthy wearing a suit and tie: House GOP leader pumps brakes on follow-up to coronavirus relief package © Greg Nash House GOP leader pumps brakes on follow-up to coronavirus relief package

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