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Ocasio-Cortez knocks McConnell for dismissing Senate without passing COVID-19 relief

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezBernie Sanders has been most-followed member of Congress on social media for six years Meghan McCain responds to Katie Couric: 'I don't need to be deprogrammed' Skepticism reigns as Biden, McConnell begin new era MORE (D-N.Y.) ripped Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHumanist Report host criticizes 'conservative Democrats:' They 'hold more power' than progressives Dobbs: Republicans lost in 2020 because they 'forgot who was the true leader' Biden's Cabinet gradually confirmed by Senate MORE (R-Ky.) for adjourning the Senate for the Thanksgiving holiday recess without passing coronavirus relief legislation.

"People across the country are going hungry, COVID is set to explode, and Mitch McConnell dismissed the Senate last week. I don’t know how these people can sleep at night. I really don’t," the progressive lawmaker, who recently won reelection to a second term, wrote in a tweet on Monday.

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President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenDobbs: Republicans lost in 2020 because they 'forgot who was the true leader' Should deficits matter any more? Biden's Cabinet gradually confirmed by Senate MORE also called on Congress last week to quickly pass a relief bill to aid Americans who have been affected by COVID-19.

"Right now, Congress should come together and pass a COVID relief package like the HEROES Act that the House passed six months ago," Biden said. "Once we shut down the virus and deliver economic relief to workers and businesses, then we can start to build back better than before."

In May, House Democrats passed a $3 trillion version of the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act and passed a $2.2 trillion version in October. Both have been criticized by Senate Republicans for being too expensive.

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McConnell has maintained that Democrats' introduction of "unrelated" items to a potential bill has aided in stalling relief.

"For months, Republicans have tried to make bipartisan progress on huge areas of COVID relief where there's no disagreement. Vaccine distribution funds. Another round of the PPP for hard-hit small businesses. But Democrats blocked it all over their unrelated liberal wish-list," he tweeted last week.

The developments come amid a surge in COVID-19 cases. More than 12 million Americans have been infected with the coronavirus, according to Johns Hopkins University, and 257,000 related deaths have been reported in the U.S.