Georgia Media Spotlights Kemp and Republicans’ Flip-Flopping on American Rescue Plan Funding

September 30, 2021

Greg Bluestein: “The irony of all this is that a lot [money]… is from the federal stimulus package that passed without any Republican votes and that Governor Kemp opposed.”

Yesterday, on “Survey Says” on WABE, Atlanta Journal-Constitution Reporter Greg Bluestein highlighted the “irony” of Brian Kemp’s announcement that funding from President Biden and Democrats’ American Rescue Plan will be used to provide bonuses for first responders, saying “The irony of all this is that a lot [of money]… is from the federal stimulus package that passed without any Republican votes and that Governor Kemp opposed.” Just a few months earlier, Kemp vocally criticized the relief package and even urged Georgia’s senators to vote against it. The federal COVID-19 package was also opposed by every Republican running for Georgia’s U.S. Senate seat and every Georgia Republican in Congress. 

As President Biden, Senators Reverend Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, and Georgia’s House Democrats work to build our economy back and finally defeat the pandemic, Republicans have shown time and time again that they would rather be a roadblock to economic progress than put aside the political games and fight for working families.

Listen to the clip here and the full episode on WABE.

Read more about Kemp’s flip-flop on the American Rescue Plan below.

FOX 5 Atlanta (9/27/21):

  • Georgia’s Democratic Party issued a statement on Governer Kemp’s announcement
  • “We’re glad to see Brian Kemp has finally come around to supporting President Biden’s American Rescue Plan after staunchly opposing this critical relief for working Georgians and law enforcement.
  • “If Kemp or any of Georgia’s Republican Senate candidates had their way, Georgia would not be seeing a dime of this essential funding for our first responders. These bonuses are thanks exclusively to the President and Georgia Democrats, who passed the COVID-19 relief package without a single Georgia Republican vote,” said Rhyan Lake, spokeswoman for the Democratic Party of Georgia.

WSB Atlanta (9/27/21):

  • A statement from Georgia Democrats reads, “We’re glad to see Brian Kemp has finally come around to supporting President Biden’s American Rescue Plan after staunchly opposing this critical relief for working Georgians and law enforcement.“

CBS 46 Atlanta (9/27/21): Gov. Kemp announces $1K pay supplement for public safety officers, first responders

  • Gov. Brian Kemp announced the establishment of a grant program to provide a $1,000 one-time pay supplement for full-time public safety officers and first responders on Monday afternoon.
  • The money is being made possible by the American Rescue Plan Act. 
  • The Democratic Party of Georgia sent the following statement after Gov. Kemp’s announcement: “We’re glad to see Brian Kemp has finally come around to supporting President Biden’s American Rescue Plan after staunchly opposing this critical relief for working Georgians and law enforcement. If Kemp or any of Georgia’s Republican Senate candidates had their way, Georgia would not be seeing a dime of this essential funding for our first responders. These bonuses are thanks exclusively to the President and Georgia Democrats, who passed the COVID-19 relief package without a single Georgia Republican vote,” said Rhyan Lake, spokeswoman for the Democratic Party of Georgia.

Atlanta Journal Constitution (9/27/21): Kemp announces $1,000 bonuses for law enforcement, firefighters, other first responders

  • Gov. Brian Kemp said Monday that law enforcement, jail and prison guards, firefighters and other first responders across the state will soon receive $1,000 bonuses.
  • Up to $100 million in bonuses will come out of federal COVID-19 relief funds that Democrats in Congress approved in March.
  • Democrats said the money for the bonuses is coming from a federal relief package Kemp opposed earlier this year.
  • “These bonuses are thanks exclusively to the president and Georgia Democrats, who passed the COVID-19 relief package without a single Georgia Republican vote,” said Rhyan Lake, spokeswoman for the Democratic Party of Georgia.

Georgia Recorder (9/28/21): Kemp announces $1,000 bonuses for police, EMTs as spotlight on crime remains

  • Gov. Brian Kemp Monday announced a $1,000 bonus for police officers, firefighters, EMTs and other first responders as part of ongoing efforts to support frontline workers during the pandemic.
  • As part of the grant supplement program, up to $100 million in federal coronavirus relief money will be set aside to cover an estimated 80,000 Georgians working in public safety positions. 
  • The program is not required to follow the usual legislative budgeting process since it’s a part of the COVID-19 recovery funds passed down to the state. 
  • The bonus supplement is coming from $4.9 billion allocated for Georgia’s state government through the American Rescue Plan that passed in March without any Republican support from the state’s congressional delegation. 

The Hill (9/27/21): Georgia to use federal funds to provide first responders $1,000 bonus

  • Rhyan Lake, a spokeswoman for the Democratic Party of Georgia, applauded Kemp for the new initiative, writing in a statement that the group is glad that the governor “has finally come around to supporting President Biden’s American Rescue Plan after staunchly opposing this critical relief for working Georgians and law enforcement.”
  • Lake also knocked Kemp and Republicans in the state for their previous opposition to the American Rescue Plan.
  • “If Kemp or any of Georgia’s Republican Senate candidates had their way, Georgia would not be seeing a dime of this essential funding for our first responders. These bonuses are thanks exclusively to the President and Georgia Democrats, who passed the COVID-19 relief package without a single Georgia Republican vote,” Lake said.

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