After months of thwarted negotiations between the two parties, Senate Democrats voted to block the passage of a $500 billion Republican coronavirus stimulus package.
While the coronavirus continues to surge to exorbitant levels, election-year politics have jarred the legislative process and extended months of gridlock on Capitol Hill.
The proposed stimulus failed in a 51-44 vote, falling short of the 60 votes needed to pass.
Every single Democrat voted against the package.
The $500 billion bill would include a federal unemployment benefit, Paycheck Protection Program funding and additional money for more coronavirus testing. If the bill had passed, money would have been directed to schools, according to the Daily Caller.
“If this relief does not pass, it will be because Senate Democrats chose to do Speaker Pelosi’s political dirty work rather than stand up for struggling people…Let’s find out common sense, agree where we can, and advance this legislation while we debate the rest, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement prior to the vote.
“The American people deserve action,” he continued.
McConnell announced last week that the Senate would be voting on the $500 billion coronavirus stimulus, saying that the Republicans will continue to work with the White House in order to bring a vote on the bipartisan legislation before the election, the Caller reports.
But Democrats simply won’t have it.
He specifically mentioned the Paycheck Protection Program and helping small businesses who have struggled to recover after the economic shutdown.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee slammed the Democrats for not passing the legislation.
“Millions of people desperately need additional COVID relief, and once again Senate Democrats decided to play partisan games instead of delivering much-needed help to Americans,” NRSC Communications Director Jesse Hunt said. “The Republican Majority has continued to offer a number of solutions but Democrats refuse to come to the table for anything except a $2 trillion liberal wish list. Democratic candidates should prove they aren’t beholden to Chuck Schumer and speak out against Senate Democrats’ intransigence.”
But this isn’t the first time the Democrats have rejected a stimulus package.
In early September, Senate Democrats voted to block the passage of an earlier coronavirus package, claiming they wanted more money, according to the Caller.