House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on Wednesday criticized Senate Republicans, and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) specifically, for blocking Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) request for unanimous consent on approving $2,000 stimulus checks for the American people, contending the Senate GOP possesses “an endless tolerance for other people’s sadness.”
McConnell, Pelosi told reporters, is standing as an “obstruction” to providing direct relief to the American people following his move to block Democrat efforts for quick approval of raising individual stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000.
“Who is holding up that distribution to the American people? Mitch McConnell and the Senate Republicans,” Pelosi said, explaining Schumer requested unanimous consent Tuesday.
Republicans, she concluded, are “in denial of the hardship that the American people are experiencing now” — both health-wise and financially.
“So they’re in denial of that need in denying this benefit. I do hope that in the days ahead … that they will see the light and understand what the suffering that is going on in our country,” she said, noting that it is simply “amazing to see the patience that some people have with other people’s suffering.”
“These Republicans in the Senate seem to have an endless tolerance for other people’s sadness,” she said.
“We urge Mitch McConnell to end his obstruction and to bring that legislation to the floor of the Senate and we urge Republicans in the Senate to encourage him to do so,” she added.
McConnell told colleagues Tuesday that the Senate would bring three of President Donald Trump’s priorities — stimulus checks, Section 230, and voter fraud — “into focus” this week. The majority leader subsequently introduced a measure that addressed all three issues, including raising checks to $2,000, as pushed by Trump:
JUST IN: McConnell introduces bill that offers $2000 direct-payments, repeals section 230 (immunity for social media companies), and commissions an election fraud study.
— Sean Langille (@SeanLangille) December 29, 2020
Reporters also asked Pelosi to expand on her plans to keep her caucus unified moving into the next year, particularly with a slimmer majority. The speaker used it as another opportunity to criticize Republicans.
“Our caucus is unified around our common ethical belief and our responsibility to America’s working families. That’s what brings us together, of course, we have differences and approach and some other ideas. And that’s our vitality,” she said.
“I would not want to be a leader of a party that was rubber stamp lock step. That’s called Republicans,” the speaker quipped. “We the Democratic Party are democratic in every way, including respecting the views of all in our caucus.”
Pelosi added that she maintains “great confidence” in advancing the left’s agenda for America’s working families and expressed the belief that they will “have the unity that we need to proceed under the leadership of Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, the Biden-Harris administration and hopefully the Democratic Senate.”
“We’ll see what next week brings,” she added.