McConnell: “The Senate Is Not Going To Be Bullied”

By Claire Hardwick

After the House passed a single-piece legislation to increase the second stimulus check form $600 to $2000, with the support of President Trump, all eyes turned towards Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. McConnell, who has made it clear he refuses to compromise on another large check for the American people, made a deal to go half way from the original $1200 in the first package. After weeks of debate and political plays, McConnell got his wish. Suddenly, he was faced with a new problem. 

But for the longtime lawmaker, McConnell found a different way out. He decided to form a new bill he new the Democrats would never accept: repeal of Section 230, increase to the stimulus check, and a special group to look at election integrity. The backlash was immediate, with liberal lawmakers attacking McConnell for refusing to help the American people. 

Despite backlash, however, McConnell made it clear today he would not break under pressure. On the Senate floor, McConnell said, “The Senate is not going to be bullied. The Senate is not going to split apart the three issues Trump linked together just because Democrats are afraid to address two of them.”

McConnell then defended his decision not to pass the House legislation. He the legislation, “’does not align with what President Trump has suggested. And which has no realistic path to quickly pass the Senate.” McConnell said the bill had too many “partisan priorities” to pass in the Republican ruled chamber. 

And now, McConnell has to play politics with Bernie Sanders, who said he will hold up the NDAA veto override if McConnell does not pass the House stimulus check legislation. The NDAA, which is a crucial piece of legislation for conservatives, provides funding for the US Military. In response to Sanders’ threat, McConnell said, “Our colleague says he will slow down this vital bill unless he gets to muscle through another standalone proposal from Speaker Pelosi that would add roughly half a trillion dollars to the national debt.”

The national debt has been the key pain point for fiscal conservatives throughout the second coronavirus package talks. Sanders, ironically, in more in line with President Trump at this point on the stimulus check issue than Mitch McConnell.