By: Chris Woodward, Billy Davis featuring IWF Staff Patrice Onwuka
Fear and uncertainty over COVID-19 destroyed the U.S. economy, shuttering thousands of businesses and putting tens of millions out of work, and Congress responded with the bipartisan $2 trillion CARES Act to help salvage the economy and help struggling families.
Now comes the HEROES Act, introduced today by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. It mirrors the CARES Act with a one-time cash donation to families but also proposes a monthly payment of $2,000 for every man, woman, and child.
Democrat senators had introduced similar legislation: $4,000 for married couples who filed taxes jointly, and $2,000 for each child up to three. So a husband and wife, with three children, would receive a whopping $10,000 monthly according to the Senate version.
“As a result of this horrific pandemic, tens of millions of Americans are living in economic desperation not knowing where their next meal or paycheck will come from,” bill co-sponsor Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) said in a statement.
The generous payments would be retroactive to March and last until three months after the federal government declares the public health emergency is over, Politico said.
The costly and controversial CARES Act has already caused trouble for business owners who survived to keep the lights on: Generous unemployment benefits are making laid-off workers choose between returning to work or receiving $600 a week on top of unemployment benefits, and many are telling the boss they will keep collecting the government money.
If the economic relief bill includes monthly checks for people, Patrice Lee Onwuka of the Independent Women’s Forum says the right-leaning organization will oppose such a proposal.
“We believe that if you’re going to do stimulus aid to individuals or businesses, it needs to be temporary,” she tells OneNewsNow. “It needs to be targeted to those who actually are hurt and it needs to be flexible to meet the realities of those places on the ground.”
Regarding the $600 in weekly benefits, Onwuka says low-income workers are being tempted by benefits that are better than their regular pay, which creates a “disincentive” to return to the workforce.
According to Fox News, the HEROES Act also includes $200 billion in hazard pay for frontline medical workers, and $175 billion to subsidize rent and mortgage payments.
Fox New reports that Republican lawmakers are planning to “hit the brakes” over the new stimulus bill after getting behind the CARES ACT, which President Trump signed into law March 27.
HERO ACT a ‘nightmare scenario’
Republicans on Capitol Hill are poring over the 1,815-page HEROES Act and say what they finding what they expected to find.
Nate Madden, a Republican staffer on the House Oversight Committee, said via Twitter that House Democrats are demanding mandatory mail-in ballots and mandatory early voting in every state, and voter ID is prohibited.
“Pelosi’s wish list if a nightmare sceario for voter fraud (and federalism),” he wrote, with a link to the relevant pages in the bill.
House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy told Fox News the Democratic bill includes funding for Planned Parenthood and gives money to “sanctuary cities,” which are Democrat-run cities that protect illegal aliens.
At the Washington, D.C.-based Heritage Foundation, economic scholar Romina Boccia describes the HEROES Act as a “partisan wish list” full of “outrageously” unrelated items.
“As a country,” she said, “we must stay focused on reopening safely, enabling American society to rise up again and drive the economic recovery.”