(UnitedVoice.com) – On Thursday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced the creation of a new House committee to provide oversight of the new $2 trillion stimulus bill passed last week by Congress. Republicans were furious and claimed it’s not needed as oversight was intentionally built into the bill. They say Democrats are playing a partisan game of “gotcha” that is nothing more than politics as usual in a time of national crisis.
Pelosi said the new House Select Committee on the Coronavirus Crisis would appoint both Democrats and Republicans. Democratic Whip Jim Clyburn (D-SC) will serve as its chair and have subpoena powers. Democrats say the committee will focus on accountability, transparency, and oversight of the government’s response to COVID-19. No Republican has been appointed to sit on the committee as of early Friday afternoon.
Republicans Say More Oversight Is Unnecessary
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said that the $2 trillion CARES Act has several oversight measures built into the bill and that Pelosi was creating unnecessary redundancy. The bill created two new committees and a commission that will oversee the execution of the stimulus bill and the overall performance of the federal government. The new groups created include:
- Oversight Committee – Tasked with conducting oversight of the federal government.
- Pandemic Response Accountability Committee – The committee includes the inspectors general whose responsibility is to investigate waste and abuse of spending. It also created a Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery that is tasked with conducting oversight over the Treasury’s stimulus spending.
- Congressional Oversight Commission – The commission oversees spending by the Treasury as well as the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve. The commission is required by law to submit reports to Congress every 30 days.
Politics as Usual
McCarthy claims that Pelosi is doing nothing more than playing politics as usual instead of focusing on addressing the crisis. It’s a common pattern for House Democrats under Pelosi’s leadership and McCarthy is justified in his skepticism given her past behavior.
This last week, Pelosi discussed a fourth stimulus bill that would be loaded with a liberal wish list of programs. These policies failed to make it into the 3rd stimulus bill because it had nothing to do with stimulus funding. The programs Pelosi is advocating for include parts of the New Green Deal, diversity requirements on boards receiving federal funds, more power for unions in union negotiations, liberal immigration policies, and more.
President Trump chimed in and said the Democrats are interested in “witch hunt after witch hunt after witch hunt. And in the end, it’s people doing the witch hunt who are losing – and they are losing by a lot. And it’s not any time for witch hunts.”
The president also said this is not a time for “endless partisan investigations” and that the focus should be on defeating COVID-19.
By Don Purdum, Freelance Contributor
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