House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy Announces His Plan To Reopen Congress — ‘House Needs To Work’

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Henry Rodgers Chief National Correspondent
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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy released his plan Monday to reopen Congress in order for important legislation to be passed as the coronavirus continues to spread and affect the lives and jobs of millions of Americans.

“I’m back in Washington today, I’m watching the Senate work. I think the House needs to work… Republicans laid out today a plan, (a) four-phase plan (of) how Congress can work,” McCarthy said on Fox & Friends. “Republicans have a plan to get us back to work, and the first phase is let’s get our committees back. We don’t have to have all of the committees at once, but let’s work on the bills that are most needed. That’s about funding, that’s about national defense, our water resources…,” McCarthy continued.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA)  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

“Once we pass those, you can bring Congress back to vote and we change our voting structure. It’s a longer vote… not everybody is on the floor at once. We can put plexiglass up, much like grocery stores in the areas that are congested. These are the ways that we can make congress actually work because I believe we are essential,” McCarthy added.

“As we open up we have to be prepared for any flare-up, and that’s how you deal with it [by] having machine [testing] here. Limit the number of staff, the press and others, and inside the committee rooms you can test… it would keep us safer and keep the essential work of Congress going instead of staying home,” he said. (RELATED: ‘It’s Time For Congress to Get Back To Work’ — Kevin McCarthy Writes Letter To Pelosi Detailing How To Reopen Congress)

McCarthy introduced this plan with Oklahoma Republican Rep. Tom Cole and Illinois Republican Rep. Rodney Davis, who all shared the four-part strategy.

McCarthy wrote a letter to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi April 21 asking her to set a clear and safe path forward for reopening Congress. In the letter, McCarthy laid out issues he believes should be addressed,  including Committee and Subcommittee Business, the House Calendar and Floor Proceedings. In the letter, McCarthy said he wants to help with a “constructive, bipartisan solution.” (RELATED: ‘Pelosi’s Layoffs’ — McCarthy Rips Democrats For Holding Up Deal For Coronavirus Aid)

Democratic leadership on Tuesday then canceled the House of Representatives’ plans to return back to Washington, just one day after Democrats made the announcement.