December 21, 2020

Duckworth Statement on Bipartisan COVID-19 Emergency Relief Deal, Funding Agreement


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] — U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) released the following statement today about her support for the bipartisan COVID-19 relief deal, which will be attached to an agreement to fund the United States Government through the end of the fiscal year:

“For months, Mitch McConnell, Donald Trump and Congressional Republicans have blocked multiple attempts by Democrats to provide real, substantial relief to hard-working Americans who are struggling. And finally this week, we were able to come to a bipartisan compromise to provide some desperately needed relief to Americans and small businesses—while also funding the government through the end of the fiscal year. However, it is not enough. I’m deeply disappointed that we aren’t providing the large-scale relief dollars our teachers, firefighters and healthcare workers need, all because Republicans would rather fight for liability shields for corporations that would hurt workers and people with disabilities.

“We’ve lost more than 310,000 Americans to this deadly virus, and we simply can’t wait a minute longer to send urgent relief to Illinoisans and people across this country. Although this proposal is far from perfect, when faced with the choice of accepting this deal or no relief at all, I will vote for it because it extends all pandemic unemployment benefits by 11 weeks, provides funding to prevent healthcare providers from closing, makes sure millions don’t go hungry during the pandemic, protects Americans from getting evicted, increases funding for our schools, sends stimulus checks to those who need help and provides more resources for testing, contact tracing, PPE and vaccine distribution.

“There’s still so much more we need to do to help working families, local governments and small businesses—especially independent restaurant operators—weather this storm. And while states will have broad flexibility to spend funds on COVID-19 mitigation, including for home and community-based services, we still must expand Medicaid coverage for these services to keep seniors and people with disabilities out of deadly congregate living settings. We have a long road ahead of us, and in the New Year, Congress must continue to deliver Americans the resources they need to get to the other side of this crisis.”