WASHINGTON – As COVID-19 cases spike across the country, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) for continuing to delay to bring the House-passed Heroes Act to the floor in the Senate. The House passed the Heroes Act more than six weeks ago. In a speech on the Senate floor, Durbin also highlighted how Senator McConnell has been solely focused on confirming federal judicial nominees instead of addressing the ongoing public health and economic crisis.

“Speaker Pelosi passed a bill about four weeks ago called the Heroes Act, a $3 trillion bill, and it has languished here in the United States Senate. Senator McConnell, when asked if he would call this bill, said that he didn’t feel there was any urgent need to do so. I hope that Senator McConnell now feels a sense of urgency,” Durbin said. “He came to the floor this morning and characterized the Heroes Act as unserious, a political wish-list that people were laughing at how unrealistic it was. Many people may have laughed at our original effort at $3 trillion, but it was desperately needed, as is a second effort as soon as possible.”

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Durbin also criticized Senator McConnell’s refusal to pass an additional COVID-19 relief bill unless corporations receive federal liability immunity from lawsuits related to the pandemic, noting that Republicans haven’t put forward an actual bill about the immunity they want to give corporations.

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Durbin concluded, “We have a lot of work to do… we have a responsibility to not only deal with the economic crisis facing America, but to take this health care crisis seriously. Dr. Fauci said the other day, we’re not in a second peak in terms of infection. He believes we’re still in the first peak, which means there are many challenges ahead. It is time for all of us to get serious… this virus is on the attack and doesn’t care what political party you belong to.”

Video of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.

Audio of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.

Footage of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here for TV Stations.

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