“Our country's health care infrastructure and our economic resolve is today being tested. We will defeat the coronavirus and we will be back stronger than ever.”
Click here to watch Sen. Barrasso’s remarks.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY) spoke on the Senate floor about coronavirus relief legislation and overcoming this health care and economic crisis as a nation.
Excerpts of Senator Barrasso’s remarks:
“For families, for health care workers, for small businesses, people who are waking up today all across the country asking ‘what's next?’ I believe today we can report, there is good news.
“The resolve and determination of this Senate, working in a bipartisan way, and working with the White House, have delivered a rescue plan, a rescue plan for the American people and for American health care workers.
“Today, we are going to pass new authorities, new resources and new programs to deal with two crisis that we as a nation are facing.
“One is the medical crisis, the coronavirus, and the other is the economic crisis that is a direct result of the medical crisis that we are facing.
“The Senate is providing an overwhelming and a massive health care and economic response package. We're doing both. And we have to do both at the same time. It's a rescue operation.
“The resources that our health care providers need and the resources that are our economy needs. The health care resources are going to be surging for communities all around the country, every one of the 50 states is affected.
“Over $100 billion for our hospitals and for the heroes who are taking care of coronavirus patients.
“As you know, I'm a physician, practiced medicine for a long time in Wyoming. People go into medicine so that they can do a number of things. You go into medicine and what we expect of our health care providers is to save lives, to cure the sick, and to prevent disease.
“For all of those men and women working in this profession, I will tell you this will be their finest hour. We're hearing about heroes all over the country and that is going to continue as long as this crisis is in effect. Because that's what we're asking them to do every day, save lives, heal the sick, and prevent disease.
“We see that with our public health officers who are out there trying to prevent disease. We see it in the communities, people trying to heal the sick and to save the lives in the hospitals day and night.
“And what they are asking for us are resources and that is now going to be provided in the bill that we're going to pass today and will hopefully soon be on the president's desk.
“So we're also surging dollars to individuals and to families and to businesses and distressed parts of our economy. Direct money, $1,200 per individual, $500 per child.
“You take a look at that and $350 billion in bridge loans and grants to small- and medium-sized businesses. Unemployment insurance to workers. We're talking about people who are working and ready to go to work the next day that weren't able to because of the medical crisis affecting us.
“Now, we have held the line against so many of the ideological issues that Democrats, and specifically the Speaker of the House, tried to put into this legislation.
“We made it clear, lives are at stake. Those are debates for another day. The crisis is upon us and the rescue work needs to be done. I believe time was wasted. We should have passed this last Sunday.
“Time was wasted and it's time that was wasted that the American people don't have and didn't have.
“But today we are working on this action plan. Pass the Senate bill today to stabilize American jobs, to surge health care resources to the front lines. The House cannot delay.
“The House needs to get this passed today and sent to the president of the United States for his signature today.
“America should not wake up tomorrow and have to watch and wait and worry to see if the House was going to pass this bill.
“The House needs to act today. The American people need that reassurance today.
“Families, young people, everyone, they have committed to slowing the spread for the remainder of the 15 day window, about a week more to go.
“People are doing it all around the country. People are going to continue to ramp up manufacturing of medical equipment, masks, ventilators, respirators, tests to save lives.
“People are going to keep cutting red tape and pressing on scientific and medical breakthroughs for treatment and vaccines.
“Going forward we need to take a long, hard look at our supply chain.
“China has been exposed. We cannot allow ourselves ever again to be in any way dependent on China for medicines, for materials, or for minerals.
“My focus, along with what I know is the president's focus, is to bring America back stronger than ever before. We are a strong and a resilient nation. We will get through this.
“Our country's health care infrastructure and our economic resolve is today being tested.
“We will defeat the virus and we will be back stronger than ever.”