House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyOn The Money: House Dems push huge jobs project in wake of coronavirus | Trump leans on businesses in virus response | Lawmakers press IRS to get relief checks to seniorsDemocrats push for green infrastructure provisions in next coronavirus packageHouse Democrats push huge jobs project in wake of coronavirusMORE (R-Calif.) on Thursday blasted Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSchumer calls for military official to act as medical equipment czarOvernight Health Care: Trump resists pressure for nationwide stay-at-home order | Trump open to speaking to Biden about virus response | Fauci gets security detail | Outbreak creates emergency in nursing homesMcConnell: Pelosi trying to ‘jam’ Senate on fourth coronavirus relief billMORE’s (D-Calif.) decision to establish a special House committee aimed at overseeing the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The California Republican said an additional panel is unnecessary and raised concerns about Pelosis selection of Majority Whip Jim ClyburnJames (Jim) Enos ClyburnPelosi: House ‘not prepared’ to vote remotely on coronavirus relief billCoronavirus stimulus talks hit setback as crisis deepensBiden has broken all the ‘rules’ of presidential primariesMORE (D-S.C.) to lead the panel.
He cited the South Carolina Democrat’s comments on a caucus call last month during which he reportedly told members of his party that this is a tremendous opportunity to restructure things to fit our vision as top lawmakers were negotiating the third stimulus bill.
I have a couple of concerns about this: one who she’s naming, Clyburn. It’s concerning to me because Congressman Clyburn is the one who thought this crisis was an opportune time to restructure government, McCarthy told reporters on a call shortly after Pelosis announcement.
That’s not what you should be doing. You should be taking care of the American public, keeping an economy strong just as it was before and moving forward.
Pelosi told reporters the special committee is necessary “to examine all aspects of the federal response to the coronavirus and ensure the taxpayer’s dollars are being wisely and efficiently spent.”
“The panel will root out waste, fraud and abuse; it will protect against price-gauging, profiteering and political favoritism,” she said on a press call Thursday. “The fact is, we do need transparency and accountability.”
McCarthy, however, said the provisions in the coronavirus response bills passed by Congress already contain adequate oversight of response efforts and made the case a special committee would be redundant. He also said the existing House Oversight and Reform Committee should have jurisdiction over the issue.
The other concern that I have from the standpoint is inside the bills that passed, we did put in oversight and this seems really redundant, he said.
In the bill that we just passed we had the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee, now this is a group of IGs headed by [acting Inspector General of the Department of Defense] Glenn Fine. We also created the Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery, and Treasury gave it a $25 million dollar budget, we created the Congressional Oversight Commission inside here where you get an appointment by all the leaders.
McCarthy noted the lower chamber would have to approve the creation of the panel and that he doesnt know when we would get back and vote on this.
Both the House and Senate are in recess until at least April 20 in an effort to avoid the coronavirus risks associated with working in the Capitol.
McCarthy’s comments come as Pelosi continues to call for Congress to act on a fourth coronavirus response bill. Republican leaders have questioned the need for additional legislation, with both McCarthy and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Health Care: Trump resists pressure for nationwide stay-at-home order | Trump open to speaking to Biden about virus response | Fauci gets security detail | Outbreak creates emergency in nursing homesMcConnell: Pelosi trying to ‘jam’ Senate on fourth coronavirus relief billOn The Money: House Dems push huge jobs project in wake of coronavirus | Trump leans on businesses in virus response | Lawmakers press IRS to get relief checks to seniorsMORE (R-Ky.) arguing they should wait to see the results of the first three bills after they take effect.
“I dont think thats appropriate at this time. We just passed the largest bill in history Weve got to make sure this is implemented correctly, McCarthy said.
“And also from the standpoint of working, anything later that we need to do we should have the data and the knowledge to make sure we get it right, that it’s targeted of where we go,” he added.