Bernie Sanders Scolds Republicans Opposed to Unemployment Benefit Boost in Stimulus Bill: ‘How Absurd and Wrong is That?’


Bernie Sanders hit out at Republican senators on Wednesday over their opposition to an enlargement of unemployment insurance coverage within the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package deal handed final night time.

The Vermont senator mentioned his GOP colleagues have been “very distressed” about jobless Americans receiving an additional $600 every week in unemployment advantages for 4 months underneath the bailout invoice, and mockingly added that the universe was collapsing.

But he additionally instructed U.S. lawmakers wanted to undertake a much less “convoluted” strategy to conserving households afloat amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and praised the U.Okay.’s plans to pay 80 p.c of all non-public sector salaries.

The Senate unanimously handed the $2 trillion emergency aid package deal final night time as hundreds of thousands of Americans have been dealing with monetary disaster amid COVID-19 shutdowns and market swings.

Bernie Sanders Scolds Republicans Opposed to Unemployment Benefit Boost in Stimulus Bill: 'How Absurd and Wrong is That?'
Bernie Sanders participates in a coronavirus public well being roundtable on March 09, 2020 in Detroit, Michigan. Scott Olson/Getty Images

Americans will obtain as a lot as $1,200 in particular person checks whereas small companies will have the ability to entry loans from a $350 billion pool.

Americans who want to assert unemployment advantages may also profit from a $250 billion enlargement of jobless insurance coverage offering them with an additional $600 every week over 4 months.

But as CNN reported on Wednesday, Republican senators have attacked the unemployment insurance coverage enlargement, with Sen. Lindsey Graham suggesting it was “incentivizing taking people out of the workforce.”

“The bill understands that for all kinds of absurd reasons having to do with Republican attacks on workers for many years, fewer than 50 percent of American workers today are eligible for unemployment benefits,” Sen. Sanders mentioned yesterday.

“What this bill does is says, rightly so, that in the midst of this terrible economic crisis… whether or not you are eligible for unemployment today, you’re going to get unemployment compensation.”

He went on to mock GOP senators against the invoice’s guidelines on unemployment advantages. The Vermont Independent mentioned, “Now I find that some of my Republican colleagues are very distressed. They’re very upset that somebody who’s making $10 to 12 an hour might end up with a pay check for four months. More than they received last week.

“Oh my god, the universe is collapsing. Imagine that. Somebody’s making $12 an hour, now like the remainder of us faces an unprecedented financial disaster with the $600 on high of their common unemployment test, is likely to be making a couple of dollars extra for 4 months.

“Oh my word, will the universe survive? How absurd and wrong is that? What kind of value system is that?”

He later hit out at Republican senators for opposing will increase to the minimal wage over a number of years whereas supporting cuts to applications.

The senator additionally went on to reward the U.K’s stimulus strategy. “The approach that they are taking which makes sense to me is to basically say to employers, if you keep your workers on the job, even if they’re not working right now, we will pay in the U.K. case 80 percent of their salary.

“I believe that’s the route we should always have gone. This is a bit more convoluted.”

The U.Okay. Chancellor Rishi Sunak unveiled the federal government’s plans to pay as much as 80 p.c of employees’ salaries to a cap of £2,500 a month on Friday final week.

He made the announcement to make sure individuals stored their jobs because the U.Okay. locked down bars and eating places to forestall the unfold of COVID-19.