Merkley Statement on Senate Coronavirus Relief Negotiations

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Oregon’s U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after voting against a Republican proposal that would bail out well-connected industries while delivering insufficient relief for working Americans. For days, Merkley has been working intensely to try to move forward a third coronavirus relief package that will deliver badly-needed help to small businesses, working families, and front-line health care workers.

“Instead of bringing a bipartisan bill to the floor, the Senate GOP proposed a bill that prioritizes taking care of politically-connected special interests instead of the people who need help the most. 

“Their bill gives a half-trillion dollar slush fund for the Trump administration to hand out to corporations with no transparency, no panel of experts to guide decisions, and no oversight. 

“Meanwhile, the bill provides far too little for front-line health care workers and working families facing the abyss. 

“In addition, the GOP is politicizing this crisis with things like targeting Planned Parenthood and undermining unions. 

“This is a national emergency, not the time for partisan politics. I am asking my colleagues to rise to this challenge and come together to get resources to the people who need it most. Americans are counting on us.”