UPDATED 11:54 AM PT — Wednesday, May 6, 2020
As the Senate returns to Capitol Hill, talks surrounding another coronavirus stimulus package are beginning to circulate again and Republicans are defining their red line.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell commented Tuesday on the prospect of future federal aid by saying Republicans are planning to evaluate previous rounds before working on anything new.
“We want to measure its effectiveness on virtually a daily basis as we move forward,” he explained. “I’m not ruling out or ruling in anything.”
During a press conference, McConnell was asked about the president’s suggestion to extend current payroll tax cuts to employees and whether the GOP will be pushing for the expansion of the relief measure. The majority leader, instead, directed the focus to business liability protections.
“I think I can safely say for our team here — the Republican Senate, the majority — if there’s any red line it’s on litigation,” said McConnell. “The litigation epidemic has already begun…as of the end of last week, one report had it that 771 lawsuits had already been filed…this is going to impact our ability to begin to get back to work.”
The Kentucky lawmaker said the Senate majority’s priority is protecting businesses as well as frontline and health care workers from lawsuits related to the pandemic.
“It will not protect somebody from gross negligence, but narrowly crafted to keep us from having an epidemic of lawsuits that which has already begun which would dramatically slow our efforts to get back to normal,” McConnell explained.