Democrat Jared Golden: Stimulus Bill Should Have Involved Both Parties

U.S. Rep. Jared Golden, D-Maine, speaks ceremony for a Zumwalt-class guided missile destroyer named for former President Lyndon Baines Johnson, Saturday, April 27, 2019, in Bath, Maine. (AP Photo/David Sharp)
AP Photo/David Sharp

Rep. Jared Golden (D-ME) criticized the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill the House passed early Saturday morning, saying the legislative process should have been more bipartisan.

Golden told the Hill on Saturday after the House voted that the $1.9 trillion stimulus did not target the right groups and suggested House Democrats should have consulted Republicans before moving forward with the bill.

“I guess I would say that I don’t think it was in the best interest of the country. I think that we have ended up with worse public policy as a result, rather than a more targeted bill that would come out of a bipartisan process,” he said.

The stimulus package would give $200 million to public schools, $50 billion for coronavirus vaccine distribution, testing, and contract tracing; and extend the weekly unemployment booster to $400 instead of $300 until the end of August 2021.

The bill would also dole out $1,400 in stimulus checks to people who earn less than $75,000 a year and provide $350 billion for state, local, and tribal governments.

Golden said the bill, as it stands, funded priorities previous legislation had addressed and, by not targeting the stimulus, lawmakers were wastefully spending money that could have funded other projects.

“We need to get more and more targeted as we move forward here so that we have… the resources we need for other critical reforms that the American people also need us to step up and get done,” said Golden.

The stimulus package passed 219-212, with no Republican votes. One other Democrat, Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-OR), also voted against the bill.

The Senate will likely amend the legislation because Democrats included a $15 minimum wage provision the Senate parliamentarian said violated chamber rules.

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