‘Last Saturday morning, I witnessed the most rushed vote I’ve ever seen in all my time in public office…’
(Joshua Paladino, Liberty Headlines) Rep. Glenn Grothman, R-Wis., called on the Senate to scrutinize the contents of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act after the House rushed a vote on it Saturday morning.
He excoriated Congress for rushing to throw money at the coronavirus pandemic without debating the best ways to address it.
The people’s representatives were unable to read the legislation. Instead, back-room deals between House leadership and unelected bureaucrats decided how to respond to the coronavirus, he said.
“Last Saturday morning, I witnessed the most rushed vote I’ve ever seen in all my time in public office,” said Grothman, who served in the Wisconsin legislature for 22 years before entering the House in 2015, in a press release.
He said House leadership told him on Friday, March 13 that the House would vote on additional legislation for the coronavirus pandemic.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi then met several times Thursday and Friday with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to negotiate the contents of the bill.
“I, along with the rest of Congress, waited two full days to find out what would be in the bill,” he continued. “Through all of this, I still expected an opportunity to read the contents of the bill on which I was expected to vote.”
Grothman said representatives finally received the 110-page bill on Saturday at midnight. “Less than 30 minutes later, we were called to the Floor to vote on it,” he said.
He added that House members were, likewise, unable to see the Congressional Budget Office’s report on the bill.
“When the dust settled, the bill passed 363-40,” he said. “I don’t see how any responsible Member of Congress could vote for a bill whose content was withheld from us until, literally, the clock struck midnight.”
Although he voted against this bill, he voted in favor of the first coronavirus response bill that appropriated $7.8 billion for the Department of Health and Human Services.
“I strongly encourage the U.S. Senate to clean up this mess. They will have plenty of time to review the bill and should pay careful attention to the paid family leave provisions of the bill,” Grothman said.
“I am disappointed with the bill overall, but particularly the fact that it did not do more to accelerate production of vital drugs and medical supplies in the United States,” he continued. “Hopefully a more responsible bill will emerge from the Senate.”