As the U.S. unemployment rate skyrockets to 14.7%, Senate Republicans are unified in rejecting another round of stimulus checks in the next coronavirus relief bill to help American workers devastated by the pandemic.
As Democrats are calling for at least one more round of checks, GOP senators, Led by Senate Majority Leaders Mitch McConnell, are throwing cold water into the idea, and several said they are strongly opposed to the proposal, according to The Hill.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) made it clear that he didn’t want another round of checks, saying the focus should instead be on reopening the economy.
“The real stimulus that’s going to change the trajectory that we’re on is going to be the economy, not government checks,” Graham said during a recent virtual town hall. “So I doubt there will be another payment.”
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) said he’s also not in favor of additional payments. “I wasn’t a real big supporter of that in the first round,” he said, The Hill reports.
“Well people in hell want ice water too,” said Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), asked about another round of checks. “I mean, everybody has an idea and a bill, usually to spend more money. It’s like a Labor Day mattress sale around here.”
Meanwhile, the US saw its worst month for jobs since the Great Depression, losing 20.5 million jobs in April, wiping out a decade of job gains in just two months, CNN reports, citing the latest data released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
The unemployment rate spiked to 14.7 percent from 4.4 percent in March, according to the April jobs report, as thousands of businesses closed and laid off or furloughed workers they could no longer afford to employ. The one-month rise in the unemployment rate between March and April is the largest ever recorded by BLS.