March 12, 2020/Media

Thom Tillis and Mitch McConnell Skip Town Without Addressing Coronavirus Outbreak, Making Testing Free

Republicans go home without considering unemployment insurance, nutrition assistance, paid family leave, or free coronavirus testing

With the Senate announcing that no more votes will happen this week, Senator Tillis is set to leave D.C. for the weekend without considering important measures to address the growing coronavirus outbreak even as new cases arise across North Carolina.

Proposals on the table include “a $2 billion boost to state unemployment insurance programs, more than $1 billion in nutritional aid, a new paid-leave benefit for employees affected by the outbreak and an increase in federal Medicaid spending, as well as a guarantee of free coronavirus testing.”

At the same time, the administration isn’t “backing off proposed cuts” to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found in the president’s budget and instead is “doubling down” on the proposed cuts.

Tillis has a record supporting cuts to the CDC, voting in 2017 to eliminate the Prevention and Public Health Fund, even as public health officials raised alarms that doing so would “cripple officials’ ability to detect, prevent and respond to health threats including pandemic flu.

“Senator Tillis and Mitch McConnell are skipping town without taking up critical measures to address the growing coronavirus outbreak,” NCDP spokesman Robert Howard said. “North Carolinians deserve a Senator who is working around the clock to make sure our state has the resources and supplies we need to properly address this public health issue, yet Senator Tillis and Mitch McConnell would rather head home than hammer out the details.”