Fox News host Sean Hannity blasted the Democrat-led $1.9 trillion COVID relief bill which he said actually contained little in the way of relief but is, instead, packed with hundreds of billions in payoffs to constituents in blue states and cities.
Citing a characterization of the “massive” spending bill by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) as “the Pelosi payoff,” Hannity expounded, “I think we can say it’s the Pelosi-Schumer payoff,” a reference to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat.
“They want you, the American people, to believe something that’s not true,” the “Hannity” host said. “They want you to believe this is an emergency COVID relief package that’s going to help We the People. Nothing could be further from the truth.”
Hannity went on to cite an analysis of the bill by House Republicans who estimated that only 9 percent of the spending would actually go towards dealing with the virus.
(Source: Fox News)
“Simply put, this legislation is NOT about COVID relief,” the House GOP noted on Twitter.
Just 9% of the Democrats’ nearly $2 trillion bill focuses on defeating COVID-19.
Simply put, this legislation is NOT about COVID relief.
— House Republicans (@HouseGOP) February 25, 2021
The Fox News host noted that, according to the legislation, nearly $700 billion of the money wouldn’t even be spent until 2022, and billions more won’t be spent until 2024. “How is that in any way categorized as emergency COVID relief?”
Reports noted earlier this month that $1 trillion in COVID relief funds approved by Congress last year have yet to be spent. That amount includes $120 billion for small businesses, many of which continue to struggle to keep their doors open or have since gone bankrupt.
Hannity went on to say that most of the money won’t get “into the hands of the American people, those who desperately need it,” as President Joe Biden promised it would.
The host went on to play a clip of Biden talking about some who have complained that the spending bill “is too big” while going on to ask, “what would they have me cut?”
Hannity pointed out that Republicans say the bill will add trillions to the national debt while sending $350 billion in taxpayer dollars to bail out Democrat-run states and cities that experienced systemic debt problems long before the pandemic.
“In other words, the Democrats want to redistribute money from states like Texas and Florida that are fiscally responsible and give it to” Democratic governors in New York, California, Michigan, and elsewhere, Hannity said.
On Thursday, House Republicans blasted the legislation as unnecessary and off-base.
“Simply put, this legislation is not about COVID relief. Over 90% of the bill is focused on enacting President Biden’s and Speaker Pelosi’s political priorities that will only hurt our recovery efforts, while just 9% of the bill actually includes spending related to combating the virus,” they said.
An analysis of the spending by The Wall Street Journal found that about $825 billion would go to fund $1,400 relief checks for most American earners as well as money for airlines, small businesses, the Paycheck Protection Program, COVID vaccinations, and funds for local health agencies.
But the remaining $1.1 trillion would go towards “a combination of bailouts for Democratic constituencies, expansions of progressive programs, pork, and unrelated policy changes,” the paper noted.
That includes $100 billion more for public schools that have already received relief funds, as well as funding for controversial infrastructure projects in Democrat constituency cities, including Pelosi’s and Schumer’s districts.
“This is a wish list for the radical left. That’s all this is,” said Hannity. “This is a … payoff to blue states and radicals in the Democratic Party.”
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