WASHINGTON, DC – After the Senate returned from a month-long recess, U.S. Senator Jack Reed urged lawmakers to take up a comprehensive, bipartisan COVID relief package that provides resources to contain the pandemic and help lift the economy out of a recession.  Instead, Senate Republicans insisted on voting for an inadequate, partisan package that doesn’t provide needed assistance to the American people or communities around the country that are struggling with combating COVID and getting the economy working again.  Today, the Republican package failed on a vote of 52-47, with 60 votes required to advance.  U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) joined all Democrats in opposing the bill.

Senator Reed issued the following statement:

“The Republican bill is beyond inadequate and borders on legislative malpractice.  This negligent approach would do more harm than good.  It failed because it could have exacerbated suffering for many and left millions more in the lurch.  It failed because Majority Leader McConnell, who wrote it, didn’t even include four significant bills to help businesses that were introduced with bipartisan cosponsors.

“Republicans have wasted months with inaction.  Now, instead of tackling COVID head on, they are playing partisan games and prioritizing provisions to help coal companies and immunize corporations that put workers in harms way. 

“This bill largely ignores the plight of those who are suffering most.  It fails to provide needed funds for hospitals, nursing homes, and frontline workers.  It ignores communities and states that are being hit hardest by this pandemic.

“If Republicans continue down this road it will lead to more mass job losses, a deeper recession, and a second major wave of COVID cases.

“I urge Republicans to get serious, confront the reality of this crisis, and work with us to help the American people.  This is a time for statesmanship and leadership, not partisan show votes.”