Hopes of bipartisan coronavirus legislation dim as Kevin McCarthy slams Democrats’ bill

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Late Wednesday, House Democrats introduced a multi-billion dollar bill designed to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, but hopes of bipartisan support dimmed Thursday when House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) expressed his opposition.

The bill “focused on guaranteeing aid programs like food assistance, unemployment insurance, and temporary sick leave” reports Politico, and “would also make free coronavirus testing widely available in a bid to address one of the nation’s major struggles in containing the outbreak.” But by Thursday morning, McCarthy had tweeted that House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) plan, “written by her staff and her staff alone … is not only completely partisan. It is unworkable.”

The White House also opposes the legislation, which came after President Trump announced his own emergency measures, including placing restrictions on travel from the European Union. “Alarmingly, the president did not say how the administration will address the lack of coronavirus testing kits throughout the United States,” Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) hit back in a joint statement following Trump’s press conference.

McCarthy, though, slammed their bill for “[forcing] permanent paid sick leave for all businesses, without exemptions and no sunsets,” as just one example of his issues with the legislation. “Instead, we are committing to get this right,” he announced, adding “we should not just take a rush just because there’s a bill. We want to make sure it works.”

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