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Clyburn rips GOP proposal to give businesses tax deductions, scale back unemployment in stimulus package

House Minority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) on Sunday criticized the Republicans' coronavirus stimulus proposal, saying the GOP effort to give businesses tax deductions and scale back unemployment is not appropriate.

Clyburn said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that he doesn’t think it makes sense to reduce the $600 per week federal unemployment assistance while giving businesses 100 percent tax deductions for “business lunches.”

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“What kind of a priority is that?” he asked. “This is people who need a tax deduction for their lunch and we cannot give the $600 supplement to unemployed people, many of them trying to take care of their children, trying to provide child care. There’s something out of whack here.”

“This is the kind of priority that seems to me cries out for leadership,” he added. “We need national leadership, and we’re not getting it.” 

CNN’s Dana BashDana BashRepublican Michigan congressman: 'The people have spoken' CNN's Dana Bash: Trump loss in Arizona would be 'John McCain's last laugh' Trump plays video of Biden, Harris talking about fracking at Pennsylvania rally MORE pointed out Republicans attempted to extend the temporary $600 per week unemployment payments by a week, but Democrats blocked it.

Clyburn responded by saying that Congress needs a “well-coordinated activity.” He condemned Republicans for not taking the House-passed HEROES Act up in the Senate and for not including state, local and more unemployment funding in their bill. 

“That’s why we won’t do it,” he said, adding the Senate has had the HEROES Act for months. 

“They’re the ones that are playing games with us,” he added later. “We’re not trying to jerk the American people around.”