- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Sen. John Kennedy, Louisiana Republican, on Wednesday said he’s not interested in seeing any more “spending porn” from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi or anyone else on Capitol Hill.

“I’m not interested in any more of Speaker’s Pelosi’s spending porn — or any other member of Congress for that matter,” Mr. Kennedy said on “Fox & Friends.”

He said the $2.2 trillion rescue package Congress passed in response to the coronavirus outbreak should be allowed to work, saying that with additional leverage the price tag is even higher.

“Unless you were throwing the Frisbee in the quad during Econ 101, deficits matter,” he said.

House Democrats had offered their own $2.5 trillion ante during the debate that included provisions tied to collective bargaining power and carbon emissions.

Louisiana has emerged as a major hot spot in the escalating coronavirus outbreak. Officials on Tuesday reported a 30% increase in new infections over 24 hours.

Mr. Kennedy said he doesn’t want to lob criticisms during the crisis, saying government officials at all levels are doing the best they can.

“Ideally, it would be the preferred route to have one purchaser of the ventilators — the federal government. But I understand when governors [want] to be proactive, want to go out on their own,” he said.

Various governors have reported bidding wars, including against the federal government, in the hunt for much-needed ventilators, which are crucial for treating COVID-19 patients.

“We’re using about 30% of our ventilators right now — it’s not like we’re out,” Mr. Kennedy said. “But we worry, like everyone else does, about running out.”

“I think we’ll beat this thing if everybody will respect what the scientists tell us,” he said.

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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