BARDSTOWN, Ky. — A second stimulus package is in the works, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said this one will include a focus on schools and health care.
Kentucky’s Senior Senator spoke in Louisville and Bardstown Monday to tout CARES Act money delivered to his home state. McConnell insisted that people wear masks and said getting children back in schools is very important to getting life back to normal following the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Since we’re not going to shut the economy down again, we don't have enough money we can borrow to continue to prop up the economy indefinitely, we have to work smart which brings me back to the mask," McConnell said.
It was a theme he pressed multiple times at multiple stops from a hospital visit in Nelson County to the Dare to Care Food Bank in Jefferson County. He called wearing masks "the single most important thing" people could do to protect their friends, family and coworkers.
“At some point along the way, people have been somewhat confused about this," McConnell said. "It ain't confusing, it's really simple."
McConnell said that Congress will begin looking at a second stimulus package this month, taking into consideration how many jobs have rebounded, where the economy is and what changes need to be made from the first coronavirus package floated in late winter.
This bill will start in his office and he insists it will focus on four things: Liability reform, kids in schools, jobs and health care.
Whether any individuals will see stimulus checks is uncertain, but McConnell suggested that any who do should be people who earn less than $40,000 annually or work in the hospitality industry, an industry hit particularly hard by the pandemic.
Mr. McConnell said schools will need to be a focus and must adapt, at least until a vaccine is ready.
"Many of them may have to go every other day in order to deal with the social distancing, the spacing and every other thing," McConnell said. "Everybody knows we can’t get back to normal without going back to school."
But McConnell appeared concerned about mask use and the lack thereof that may be leading to increased COVID-19 cases in recent days.
“Clearly a lot of people thought when we started opening up the economy again, 'let the good times roll,' and a lot of people went out and we've seen the spiking of cases," McConnell said.
While the last bill passed with near unanimous support, McConnell said he expects that will not be the case this time, citing a changed political landscape.