Sen. Bernie Sanders missed a Senate procedural vote on the stimulus package meant to help businesses during the coronavirus pandemic.
Instead, the 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, who was in his home state of Vermont, held a virtual event with Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, and Ilhan Omar on the economic and health crises created by the outbreak.
Last week, Sanders snapped at a reporter who asked about a time frame in which the senator might decide to end his presidential bid, saying he had bigger problems to deal with caused by the outbreak.
“I’m dealing with a f—ing global crisis,” the Vermont senator told CNN’s Manu Raju on Wednesday. “Right now, I’m trying to do my best to make sure that we don’t have an economic meltdown and that people don’t die. Is that enough for you to keep me busy for today?”
Neither Sanders’s campaign nor his Senate office immediately responded to a request for comment from the Washington Examiner about why he skipped the procedural vote.
During the virtual event, Sanders slammed the stimulus package proposed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. The package included direct cash payments that would average about $3,000 per family, expanded unemployment insurance, and $350 billion in aid to struggling small businesses. It also provides $500 billion in loans to industries hurt by the economic fallout.
Senate Democrats blocked the relief package worth more than $2 trillion on Sunday.
“It is hard for me to believe that in the midst of this terrible crisis that we have a Senate Republican bill that would give the Trump administration a blank check to hand out corporate welfare to virtually any corporation in America without conditions as to how they can protect workers in this country,” Sanders said.
Author: Caitlin Yilek
Source: Washington Examiner: Bernie Sanders skips Senate procedural vote on stimulus package to do livestream with AOC and Ilhan Omar