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Washington, D.C. – House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) was joined by House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (LA-01), and Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney (WY-AL) during a press conference this afternoon outside of the U.S. Capitol. He thanked essential employees and underscored the need for Congress to work together, in a bipartisan manner to defeat this virus. He also spoke on the success of the Paycheck Protection Program and why delaying the passage of additional funds hurt tens of thousands of small businesses who were locked out of applying. 

Highlights of the remarks are below, or watch online here:

“For every American on the frontlines: to those that are in the hospital, the doctors to the nurses, those who are making the gowns and the masks, and those who are restocking our shelves to truck drivers and farmers – we want to say THANK YOU. A sincere thank you for being with our country as we go through this…

“For the family members who have fought and for those who have lost loved ones when you couldn’t even be near them, you are in our prayers…

“But this is a commitment we make to you – we will not stop working until we will defeat this virus and to do that Congress needs to act.

“I did not think it would take this long to put more money into [helping] our small businesses – a program that in 14 short days, was able to get out the equivalent [in loans] of what the Small Business Administration is able to do in 14 years…

“More than 1.6 million [companies and small businesses] were able to get resources to pay the workers and to keep their doors open even if they can’t work right now…

“To those 700,000 applications that [couldn’t be processed], I am sorry that Congress couldn’t act two weeks before so we would never have had to shut it down…

“To those who got laid off last week because Congress could not act, that’s unbecoming. We are better than that as a Congress. We asked for this money two weeks ago. It should have never stopped…

“I had a long conversation with the Speaker today. She has postponed the proxy vote. Anything we do [in this chamber] that deals with COVID should be bipartisan…

“I have had many conversations with Majority Leader Steny Hoyer on ways and ideas we can open back up. I sent a letter to the Speaker yesterday with some of those ideas…

“Congress is essential – the American public needs to see that we are working. They need to understand we can do it in a safe manner, so states and others can start to open as well…

“Congress on both sides of the aisle should make a pledge to stop any more political games of holding up resources that are needed for small businesses and others.

“We will defeat this virus but we will only do it together.” 

 

Click HERE to read Leader McCarthy’s letter to Speaker Pelosi urging her to establish a clear, safe, and effective plan for reopening Congress.