Republican Introduces Bill To Rescind $25 Million For Kennedy Center In Coronavirus Package, As They Lay Off Musicians

Written by Martin Walsh

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is still under fire for slowing down the passage of the coronavirus stimulus bill last week after she tried slipping in a slew of unnecessary, left-wing proposals.

In particular, Pelosi and Democrats were able to keep $25 million in funding for the Kennedy Center, which has absolutely nothing to do with helping struggling Americans during these tough times.

Now, Republican Wisconsin Rep. Bryan Steil has introduced a bill to rescind the $25 million after it was reported that the Kennedy Center laid off musicians after getting the money from Congress.

Steil’s bill, which has 15 cosponsors including House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, would pull the $25 million for the Kennedy Center.

Steil said Pelosi was likely the one who had the idea for the funding for the Kennedy Center in the first place.

In a phone call with The Daily Caller, Steil said: “So we were negotiating this bill. Nancy Pelosi holds up getting relief to Americans to try to get this and other things in the bill. And so the day that the House passed this bill, I drove from Janesville, Wisconsin, to Washington, D.C. to be there.”

“I spoke on the bill, spoke about how I thought the funding for the Kennedy Center was inappropriate. And then before I left Washington, D.C. to drive back home, the day we passed the bill, I dropped this bill into the hopper and introduced it to start day one. The moment after we passed a bill to begin the work of improving it and getting out of the bill, inappropriate funding. A handful of days later, after this passes and you find out that the Kennedy Center is laying people off. That’s almost the icing on the cake,” Steil continued.

Scalise spoke about the bill Monday night on Fox News.

“Nancy Pelosi literally held the bill up for days to get her pet projects… Interesting she’d use the choice of words, ‘fiddlers,’ because it was the fiddlers, the violin players, all the musicians at the Kennedy Center that got laid off,” Scalise said.

The Daily Caller notes:

This comes as Kennedy Center sent an email to musicians in the National Symphony Orchestra saying their checks would be cut off starting April 3.

This happened just hours after the news they received the news that they would be receiving the $25 from the coronavirus package.

“The Covid-19 Advisory Committee was broadsided today during our conversation with [Kennedy Center President] Deborah Rutter,” the email states. “Ms. Rutter abruptly informed us today that the last paycheck for all musicians and librarians will be April 3 and that we will not be paid again until the Center reopens.”

“Everyone should proceed as if their last paycheck will be April 3,” it continued. “We understand this will come [as a] shock to all of you, as it did to us.” 

Democrats also tried including ballot harvesting and amnesty for DACA illegal aliens in the coronavirus relief bill, which were removed by Republicans.

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