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Pelosi’s Partisan Wish List No Closer to Becoming Law Following Committee Hearing

Washington, July 23, 2020 -

Today, the House Financial Services Committee spent nearly five hours in a hearing on Speaker Pelosi’s partisan wish list, the so-called “HEROES” Act. This legislation passed the house more than two months ago, with bipartisan opposition, and stands no chance of becoming law.

The Top 10 “Greatest Hits” in Democrats’ Partisan Wish List

1.     H.R. 6800 incentivizes workers to stay home. H.R. 6800 extends the $600-per-week unemployment bonus through the end of January 2021. Combined with state unemployment support, the enhanced benefits in H.R. 6800 incentivize workers to stay home and drive up costs for goods and services.

2.     H.R. 6800 benefits wealthy Democrats. H.R. 6800 eliminates the $10,000 cap on state and local tax (SALT) deductions, which provides a windfall for high-income residents in high tax states. At the same time, it would raise taxes on struggling small businesses by limiting deductibility of losses.

3.     H.R. 6800 places costly burdens on small businesses. The bill includes a full-year extension of what was supposed to be a temporary mandate on small businesses to provide up to 12 weeks of paid sick and family leave to all workers. Mandating paid time off increases costs for small businesses when they can least afford it.

4.     H.R. 6800 provides a $915 billion bailout for states. The bill provides $500 billion in state government bailouts, $375 billion in local government bailouts, and $40 billion for tribal and territory governments, with no requirement that states, or localities apply those funds to pandemic-related relief programs. The bipartisan CARES Act provided approximately $1 trillion in support to states and localities, much of which remains unspent.

5.     H.R. 6800 forgives up to $10,000 in student loans that are already in default or 90 days past due. The bill shifts the student loan debt burden to taxpayers, many of whom did not personally take out loans or who faithfully repaid their loans. This program—which requires no connection to COVID-19 for eligibility—is just the latest attempt by Democrats to socialize the entire student loan industry and further drive up higher education costs.

6.     H.R. 6800 includes $50 million for “Environmental Justice” grants. These grants tend to block business development and reduce economic opportunity to the underserved and disadvantaged communities they were meant to help.

7.     H.R. 6800 includes $25 million for the arts, humanities, libraries, and museums. The bill provides $10 million for the National Endowment for the Arts, $10 million for the National Endowment for the Humanities, and $5 million for the Institute for Museum and Library Services. There is little hope of this money being spent to help working Americans.

8.     H.R. 6800 includes a postal bailout. H.R. 6800 would provide a $25 billion bailout to the U.S. Postal Service without requiring any much-needed long-term reforms.

9.     H.R. 6800 incentivizes illegal immigration. H.R. 6800 would send Economic Impact Payments to illegal aliens and establish dangerous restrictions on immigration enforcement, including deportations, during the public health emergency. The bill requires a review of the immigration files of all individuals in ICE custody to assess the need for continued detention.

10.  H.R. 6800 exposes the upcoming election to voter fraud. H.R. 6800 would encroach upon State authority over elections by providing for Federal vote-by-mail, same-day registration, and other election mandates that invite voter fraud. The bill would legalize ballot harvesting nationwide and allow proxies to drop off absentee ballots.

Bonus track

H.R. 6800 is the most expensive bill in history. The 1,800-page bill would be the largest, most expensive spending package in U.S. history, surpassing the $2.2 trillion bipartisan measure Congress passed in March. The $3.4 trillion bill is loaded with partisan progressive policies unrelated to the pandemic.

Here's what Republican Committee Members had to say about today’s hearing, which Ranking Republican Patrick McHenry (NC-10) rightfully called “a waste of time.”

Rep. Ann Wagner (MO-02): “The purpose of this hearing today is to discuss Speaker Pelosi’s legislation H.R. 6800, the HEROES Act, a massive almost 2,000-page bill that surprised not only conservatives, but even the most progressive Democrats. It would: federalize local elections, give tax cuts to the rich, pour billions into universities that are already over-charging students, expand Obamacare—while banning information about lower cost health care insurance plans—and prevent the administration from securing our borders and protecting Americans from criminals who come into the country illegally.”

Rep. Roger Williams (TX-25): “…I have to call out this hearing for what it is: a complete waste of time. We have come here to talk about a bill that passed two months ago, that the Senate will never take up, and that the White House has already said they would veto it if it were to get to the President’s desk. Even some of my Democratic colleagues, as we have heard this morning, on this committee couldn’t vote for this bill and have conceded that this is a wish list of priorities, not tailored to this pandemic.”

Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-03): “This is kind of a back to the future moment here. We are talking about a bill that has already passed the House and is a socialist wish list, as indicated by one of the members on the other side of the aisle.”

Rep. John Rose (TN-06): “I want to echo, as I begin today, my colleague’s criticism about the focus of the hearing we are taking part in today. This hearing, in my view as a first-time elected official, demonstrates what Washington politics at its worst looks like. I believe that we are wasting the Committee’s time and resources by showcasing a bill that has already passed the House, and frankly H.R. 6800 was a clear attempt by the Democratic leadership to push as many liberal priorities as possible into a bill, and disguise it as COVID-19 relief. The decision to hold this hearing on a bill that has no chance of becoming law is a disappointment.”

Rep. Bill Huizenga (MI-02): I guess I am reminded of a famous quote from a former colleague of this body. I didn’t serve with him, but Rahm Emanuel famously said in 2008 ‘you never want a serious crisis to go to waste. I mean it’s an opportunity to do things you did not think you could do before.’ Well that’s exactly what my friends on the other side of the aisle are doing today. Instead of focusing on bipartisan solutions to help jump start our economic recovery, we are doing a retread of a bill that has already passed—two months ago.”

Rep. Bryan Steil (WI-01): “The Coronavirus pandemic has punched us in the face. It’s attacked our health and it’s attacked our economy and our jobs. Businesses have been forced to lay people off. Schools have been closed. At times I’ve seen the best of Congress. I’ve seen us come together—Democrats and Republicans, the Trump Administration—to provide for the CARES Act, to provide needed relief to those who are in pain through no fault of their own. … Today I’m seeing what’s the worst of Congress, which is partisan politics that’s not addressing solutions and not getting the job done. … We should not be wasting our time talking about a bill that will never become law.”

Rep. Steve Stivers (OH-15): “As a member who has voted for every bipartisan response to the coronavirus and the economic devastation that resulted from an intentional shutdown of our economy to fight that virus, I was really disappointed in the HEROES Act because it was a partisan wish list of things that are never going to become law.”

Watch and learn more about today’s hearing here.

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