Senator Hassan says about bipartisan cooperation, “We have to get used to talking to each other again, airing our disagreements. That’s what you need to break through, find out what you have in common, and get something done.”
In an interview with WKXL’s Chris Ryan, Senator Maggie Hassan discusses the $900 billion stimulus bill, which was passed by the Senate last night; reflects on the legislative process which has frequently been compared to sausage making; gives hope for more cooperation and less in-fighting between the Democrats and Republicans in the future; and speculates about whether President Trump will sign or veto the COVID relief bill.
As Senator Hassan describes the bill which awaits President Trump’s signature, the bill is actually two allocations—one for the overall government spending plan for the rest of the fiscal year and the other is $600 billion COVID Relief Plan which she helped to negotiate with a bipartisan group of Senators. The relief portion of the bill is designed to assist workers who have become unemployed and to aid small businesses which have been affected by the pandemic. In addition, the bill provides funding for the roll out of the vaccination program. Direct support will be provided to individuals and families in the form of a per person $600 check for families which earn less than $150,000 per year.
When she was asked about the process which led up to this 5,000-page bill being thrown together at the end of the year and the arrival of a new Congress, Senator Hassan explains the reason for the deals and delays. At the center of the hold up, is the fact that we have two parties with very different ideas about how much the government should invest in pandemic relief versus economic stimulus.
Eventually, Republicans and Democrats could agree on the relief which American families and businesses need right now.
Senator Hassan is optimistic that the bipartisan negotiations which led up to putting this relief bill together might lead to more cooperation in the future. The Senator said about the importance of having a dialogue, “We have to get used to talking to each other again, airing our disagreements, but that’s what you need to break through, find out what you have in common, and get something done.”
In the final portion of the interview Senator Hassan discussed the fact that the Senate has scheduled an additional session after the holiday to override a potential veto by President Trump. The Senator doesn’t expect that he will veto the relief bill, but there is the possibility that he might veto the National Defense Authorization Act which sailed through Congress earlier this month.