Ilhan Omar Statement on Coronavirus Relief Package
WASHINGTON— Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) issued the following statement on the agreement on a coronavirus relief package and end of year spending bill, which she plans to support.
“My priority remains getting Minnesota families direct financial relief. Two weeks ago, survival checks for the American people were not even on the table. Along with Senator Bernie Sanders and the Congressional Progressive Caucus, I organized to get as much direct relief as possible for the American people. I led a letter with nearly 60 House Members from all wings of the Democratic Party calling for survival checks, and the Congressional Progressive Caucus later took on that position as a caucus. Since the beginning of the pandemic, I have also pushed for relief for mixed status families, who pay taxes and should be eligible for relief just like every American family. As a result, the bill contains survival checks, including for mixed status families. It also provides critical unemployment insurance to those who have lost their jobs due to this pandemic and extends the deadline for states and localities to use CARES Act funds, something our Mayors and Governors have been pleading for. As a Member of the Education & Labor Committee, I am also proud that we included billions in school funding and broadband investment in this emergency relief.
“But that doesn’t mean this package is anything close to enough. Hundreds of thousands of Minnesotans remain out of work, and millions more have had their hours cut or lost a steady income stream due to the pandemic. Six hundred dollars is not close to sufficient to cover eight months of lost wages, food or rent expenses. State and local governments in Minnesota are bleeding resources, while shouldering the burden of education, public safety, and public healthcare workers in the face of massive revenue shortfalls. Mitch McConnell and his Republican colleagues have stonewalled state and local aid, along with survival checks that meets the scale of the crisis. This is a collective failure in helping Americans in their time of need.
“This cannot be our last package. Families need so much more. State and local governments need help—desperately. I cast this vote as a down payment for a more just and humane pandemic response. Let us meet this moment and begin to support our communities when they need it most.”