Congressman Paul Gosar Did Not Vote for the American Rescue Plan
He voted against it, twice. (UPDATED)
On some days, we wrestle with matters of great complexity and nuance. On others, we are called upon to affirm small and simple truths. Today is such a day.
In early 2021, newly-inaugurated President Joe Biden and the overwhelming majority of Democrats in Congress passed a $1.9 trillion economic stimulus bill entitled the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.
Republicans did not help them.
No Republicans in the Senate voted for the American Rescue Plan. Not once. Not ever. It proceeded to consideration in the Senate via reconciliation, with Vice President Kamala Harris providing the tie-breaking vote to begin debate, and it passed the chamber 50-49.
No Republicans in the House voted for the American Rescue Plan either. Not once or ever. Each time the pandemic relief bill came to the floor, Republicans united in opposition to it.
Rep. Gosar’s own website attests to his opposition:
The official voting records of the House confirm that Rep. Gosar, like all of his Republican colleagues, voted repeatedly to kill the American Rescue Plan and criticized the funding it sent to communities around the country as unaffordable and unnecessary.
By opposing the American Rescue Plan, Rep. Gosar opposed every part of it, including the $8 billion it directed to airports suffering from the reduced travel volume imposed by the pandemic.
So, you’ve got it now. Paul Gosar voted against the American Rescue Plan. He voted no, not yes. Every time.
Why do I belabor this? Because Rep. Gosar is trying to take public credit for the money he opposed spending. He released a statement today saying he was “pleased to announce” the award of “critical funding for economic relief” at a municipal airport in his district.
This tactic, of course, is nothing new. As surely as the swallows will return to San Juan Capistrano each spring, Republican members of Congress will tout the arrival in their districts of funds they adamantly opposed in Washington. For those of us who watch Congress somewhat closely, the practice rankles. It reeks of deception.
Rep. Gosar deserves no credit for the funds from the American Rescue Plan, which he did everything in his power to defeat.
Somewhat notably, Rep. Gosar apparently recruited a local official to join in the misdirection. “We are grateful for Congressman Gosar’s continued support,” the Congressman’s release quotes Jen Miles, the Mayor of Kingman, Arizona saying. She goes on, “this funding will help with the ever-growing Kingman Municipal Airport Operations.” What support does she mean? And how has it continued? Because, again, Rep. Gosar did not ever support the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 or the funding for airports that came with it.
Pawprints reached out to Mayor Miles for confirmation of her statement, clarification of its meaning, and acknowledgment that Rep. Gosar voted against this legislation. She replied with the following statement acknowledging Gosar’s vote against the funding and thanking the state’s Democratic Senators. Miles also indicated that Gosar’s office had alerted the city to the award of the grant funding.
Statement from Mayor Jen Miles:
“We are grateful for Senators Kelly and Sinema’s continued support and “YES” votes on the ARPA, and this funding will help with the ever-growing Kingman Municipal Airport operations. To clarify my earlier statement, I was aware of Congressman Gosar’s “NO” vote on the America Rescue plan Act, however Rep. Gosar has supported the airport in the past, and opportunities for federal dollars coming to rural Arizona, as his office notified the City of Kingman regarding these grant dollars.”
(UPDATED 6:26p ET to include Mayor Miles’s response.)