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Republicans on Saturday blocked Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s attempt during a rare weekend session to force consideration of a $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief bill as the GOP rushes ahead with its effort to confirm right-wing judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court just ahead of the election.

After a speech decrying the Barrett confirmation process as “a very dark moment for the Senate,” Schumer requested unanimous consent for the chamber to take up a revised version of the HEROES Act that the Democrat-controlled House passed earlier this month. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has refused to allow a Senate vote on the bill despite growing suffering across the nation and warnings that failure to approve additional spending could cause lasting damage to the economy.

Senate Majority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.) objected to Schumer’s request for unanimous consent, dismissing the effort to force debate on the revised HEROES Act as a political ploy.

If passed, the legislation would restore the $600-per-week federal unemployment boost Republicans allowed to expire in July, send another round of $1,200 stimulus checks to most Americans, and provide desperately needed aid to state and local governments.

“It’s an outrage that Senate Republicans are ramming through a radical Supreme Court nominee who will strip healthcare from 23 million Americans during a pandemic while doing nothing to provide economic relief to millions of working-class Americans who desperately need our help,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said Saturday.

Watch the Senate session live:

After Republicans blocked the HEROES Act, Senate Democrats requested unanimous consent for consideration of a slew of additional bills that McConnell has “consigned to his legislative trashcan,” including measures that would expand voting rights and reform law enforcement. Republicans denied each request.

“Two hundred twenty thousand Americans have died from Covid, but the Senate GOP only seems to care about forcing Trump’s nominee through an illegitimate process,” Schumer tweeted Saturday.

Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, applauded Democrats’ effort, writing that the public “should remember what McConnell is ignoring as he jams through an anti-civil rights SCOTUS justice.”

“Remember: McConnell has the Senate in session right now to rush through Barrett’s nomination,” Gupta tweeted. “Not to pass real Covid relief, or police reform, or voting rights bills. He isn’t working for the people. He is working to stack the courts and entrench power. That’s it.”

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Doesnt matter what these idiots do neither side will ever get the permanent upper hand on the other, this is per Biblical prophecy

  2. This is what every democrat needs to be shouting from The rooftops. That Mitch Mcconnell and his fellow pathetic power hungry Trumpublican senatots have constant bipartisan house bills to help american citizens and small businesses in order to ram through a right wing judge that will undoubtedly remove Obamacare and cause those who need healthcare the most to lose their coverage. And along the way destroy the economy in order to “Stick it to to the liberal democrats.” And and any Republican Americans who also suffer from these senator’s heartless actions are just expendable carnage. They don’t Mitch Grim Reaper McConnell does not care how many Americans suffer, lose their jobs and their homes, or God Forbid their lives in order to ramrod their supreme court nomination. Even though the majority of Americans, including Republicans want the elected president to choose the next supreme court judge.

  3. The confirmation is the last act of defiance for this pathetic lot. I am not sure Barrett will ever find her new position even among other conservative judges, all that welcoming.
    She will get there on the backs of ignored dead or suffering Americans

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