Energy and Commerce Committee Republican Leader Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) released the following statement after the New York Times reported that Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra, “hinted on Tuesday that the Biden administration may need to ask Congress for more money to fight the coronavirus pandemic.”
“Before the Biden administration makes any requests for more funds, the Department of Health and Human Services must first provide us with details on how it spent the funds from the Democrats’ nearly $2 trillion spending bill they rushed through Congress in February. If Secretary Becerra is hinting that he may need more money, perhaps he should ask Democrats why only 9 percent of their hyper-partisan package was targeted to COVID-19. Congress could have worked in a bipartisan way to provide targeted relief and improve pandemic preparedness and response initiatives. Instead, the Democrats went at it alone for record spending and record-high inflation that is hurting people’s quality of life.
“Secretary Becerra’s comments raise additional questions that need to be answered. Republicans on the Energy and Commerce Committee continue to request that Chairman Pallone schedule a hearing on this matter. It’s imperative that we exercise our oversight responsibilities and ensure accountability over the administration’s pandemic response.”
Note: On February 4, 2021, Energy and Commerce Republicans sent a letter to the Office of Management and Budget to request details on the amount of remaining funds unspent from the CARES Act (H.R. 748), the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act (H.R. 266), and the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 (H.R. 133). CLICK HERE to read the letter. To date, the administration has not responded to this request.
On October 27, 2021, Energy and Commerce Republicans sent a letter to Energy and Commerce Chair Frank Pallone (D-NJ) requesting he schedule a hearing on the Biden Administration’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. CLICK HERE to read the letter.