Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) on Wednesday publicly supported President Trump’s call for lawmakers to increase direct payments to the American people in the multitrillion-dollar coronavirus relief and government spending bill passed by the House and Senate this week.
“I support President @realDonaldTrump‘s demand to increase direct payments for long-suffering Americans to $2,000 per person. And I also support his call to end Section 230 Big Tech legal liability protections,” Graham said on Wednesday following Trump’s Tuesday remarks on the nearly 6,000-page bill:
I support President @realDonaldTrump's demand to increase direct payments for long-suffering Americans to $2,000 per person.
And I also support his call to end Section 230 Big Tech legal liability protections.
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) December 23, 2020
Graham’s support follows Trump’s address, in which he criticized what some GOP lawmakers have dubbed a “legislative monstrosity” for failing to provide sufficient relief directly to Americans, while giving billions to foreign countries, special interests, and lobbyists.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), one of the six GOP senators who rejected the bill, delivered a pointed speech on the Senate floor this week, lamenting the fiscal irresponsibility of “free money Republicans” who joined Democrats in voting in favor of the $2.3 trillion bill.
“And yet if free money were the answer, if money really grew on trees, why not give more free money? Why not give it out all the time? Why stop at $600 per person? Why not $1,000? Why not $2,000?” Paul said.
“Maybe these new free money Republicans should join the everybody-gets-a-guaranteed-income caucus. Why not $20,000 a year for everybody? Why not $30,000? If we can print up money with impunity, why not do it?” he questioned.
“The treasury can just keep printing the money,” the Kentucky Republican continued. “That is, until someone points out that the emperor has no clothes and that the dollar no longer has value.”
Paul doubled down on Wednesday, telling Fox & Friends that the bill was “a bunch of socialist spending” and adding that Republicans who voted for it are “no better than the Democrats.”
“And so, that’s the problem we have. People need to get involved in primaries and elect better people, but the people in Washington are bankrupting us — both parties,” he added.
Graham on Tuesday explained what he viewed as the pros and cons of the bill and amounted it to “sausage making,” maintaining that Democrats “have a say” as they run the House.
“And if they ever get the House, the Senate, and the White House, it will be a financial disaster for this country,” he added, urging Republicans in Georgia to vote in the upcoming runoff to preserve the GOP majority in the upper chamber.