March 22, 2020

Hirono Statement in Opposition to the McConnell Coronavirus Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) released the following statement on Mitch McConnell’s coronavirus bill:

“Governors across the country are having to step up in the absence of meaningful action from the Trump Administration in combating the coronavirus. This is especially difficult because states do not know how widespread coronavirus is in their communities because we still don’t have enough test kits.

“Yesterday, the Governor of Hawaii – working with county mayors, the visitor industry, and labor – issued an emergency proclamation establishing a mandatory 14-day quarantine for all individuals who travel to Hawaii to stop the spread of COVID-19. This action effectively shuts down the visitor industry in our state. Tourism is our state’s largest private industry that employs tens of thousands.

“My constituents are rightly demanding that Congress pass a bill that actually helps people who need it most – workers, families, and the most vulnerable in our community. The McConnell bill does almost nothing to combat the severe shortage of ventilators and personal protective equipment in our hospitals. It provides a $500 billion slush fund for huge corporations with little transparency or oversight.

“I oppose this bill as currently written. It’s past time for Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans to get serious about passing a bill that does much more for American families, workers, and the most vulnerable.”