California Gov. Gavin Newsom says first responders will be the “first ones laid” off unless federal bucks arrive in the Golden State in the near future.
The Democrat appeared to be playing a political game of chicken with Republicans in Congress over the weekend during a discussion about the coronavirus pandemic with CNN’s Jake Tapper.
Mr. Newsom specifically had a message for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Republicans when asked about a $3 trillion relief bill being “dead on arrival.”
“Can you explain what you think will happen to California if the federal government doesn’t give you money to help you out?” Mr. Tapper asked Sunday.
“I hope they’ll consider this: the next time they want to salute and celebrate our heroes, our first responders, our police officers and firefighters, consider the fact that they are the first ones who will be laid off by cities and counties,” Mr. Newsom said. “The folks who are out there, the true heroes of this pandemic, are healthcare workers and nurses. … They’re the first ones to be laid off.”
Mr. Newsom insisted that he was not looking for “charity” or “handouts,” but instead wanted funds commensurate for “Depression-era unemployment numbers.”
Nearly 1.5 million Americans have been infected with the contagion with roughly 90,000 patients dying as a result.