Former Speaker Newt GingrichNewton (Newt) Leroy GingrichMORE (R-Ga.) said Wednesday that he would “beg” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump seeking challenger to McConnell as Senate GOP leader: report Budget chairman: Debt ceiling fight 'a ridiculous position to be in' Buckle up for more Trump, courtesy of the Democratic Party MORE (R-Ky.) to have a clean vote on $2,000 stimulus checks, warning that the GOP will lose its majority in the Senate if additional funds are not approved.
Speaking Wednesday on Fox News, Gingrich said the $2,000 payment must be brought up as a stand-alone vote ahead of the Jan. 5 runoff elections in Georgia that will determine the balance of power in the upper chamber.
Sens. David PerdueDavid PerdueGOP sees Biden crises as boon for midterm recruitment Trump campaign, RNC refund donors another .8 million in 2021: NYT Loeffler meets with McConnell amid speculation of another Senate run MORE (R-Ga.) and Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerWarnock picks up major abortion rights group's endorsement in reelection bid Trump endorses Hershel Walker for Georgia Senate seat Herschel Walker's entrance shakes up Georgia Senate race MORE (R-Ga.), who will face off against Democrats John Ossoff and the Rev. Raphael Warnock, respectively, next week, support the payment.
President TrumpDonald TrumpCapitol fencing starts coming down after 'Justice for J6' rally Netanyahu suggests Biden fell asleep in meeting with Israeli PM Aides try to keep Biden away from unscripted events or long interviews, book claims MORE is pushing Congress to pass the additional $2,000 stimulus after he grudgingly signed a $2.3 trillion coronavirus relief deal that is sending out $600 to those who qualify.
“I would beg him to bring up $2,000 payment as a free-standing independent vote, and have people like Sens. Loeffler and Perdue come back and vote for it,” Gingrich said. “Take it off the table as an issue because, frankly, Warnock and Ossoff could be in favor of the $2,000 unit and can attack Mitch McConnell for the next six days, and I think it’s very hard at that point to win the race.”
The balance of power in the Senate is at stake in the Jan. 5 runoffs. If Republicans win one seat, they’ll hold a slim majority. If Democrats win them both, they’ll effectively control the Senate as Vice President-elect Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisRepublicans caught in California's recall trap Harris facilitates coin toss at Howard University football game Far-right rally draws small crowd, large police presence at Capitol MORE will cast tie-breaking votes.
The House has passed a measure to send out the additional stimulus but McConnell on Tuesday blocked a stand-alone vote on the bill. McConnell could bring it back up wrapped with provisions to strip tech companies of protection from lawsuits and to investigate election fraud, but those additions would likely be dealbreakers for Democrats.
“The long term control of the U.S. Senate lies in Georgia,” Gingrich said. “Both Georgia senators have endorsed the $2,000 payment that President Trump has proposed, and Mitch ought to bring it up with a clean vote.”
“I really am very worried that if he plays a clever parliamentary game, it may look good inside the Senate but it could cost us two Senate seats and control of the Senate,” he added.