By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
U.S. Sen. Cynthia Lummis criticized President Joe Biden and Senate Democrats on Friday for their decision to use a procedural maneuver to bypass a potential GOP filibuster and pass the new $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill.
The bill passed on a 51-50 party line vote, but only after Vice President Kamala Harris showed up at the U.S. Capitol early Friday morning to break the tie.
“Only weeks after Democrats and Republicans came together for the fifth time in less than a year to pass bipartisan coronavirus relief legislation, ‘Unity’ President Joe Biden chose the partisan path,” Lummis said. “Even after an Oval Office meeting with Republican senators, President Biden pushed forward with a legislative plan to ignore Republicans and ram a progressive wish list through the Senate.”
The $1.9 trillion relief bill will include a new round of stimulus checks and provide money for vaccination efforts. The bill will now be sent to the House of Representatives for its approval.
“With $4 trillion previously allocated and billions in relief left unspent, Joe Biden could pause to assess the situation, and work with Republicans to send targeted relief where it’s needed,” Lummis said. “Instead, the ‘unity’ president and Democrats in the Senate are choosing division and partisanship. Families, businesses and communities in Wyoming deserve better.”
Lummis recently proposed a bill that would reverse the moratorium on oil and gas leases on federal lands. The ban has been heavily criticized by Wyoming officials.
“Instead of using the normal bipartisan Senate process to pass a bill, President Biden and Senate Democrats used their razor-thin majority to pass a budget resolution under the Congressional Budget Act to set spending levels for the federal government over the coming decade,” Lummis said. “Passage of a budget resolution is the only procedural way for Senate Democrats to pass a coronavirus bill in the coming weeks without negotiating with Republicans.”