The House is expected to pass President Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID relief spending package later this week, but in the Senate, Republicans plan to put up a fight.
"Every single dollar that we're spending on COVID is something that we're borrowing from our children, or from China, or from other places," Sen. James Lankford told CBN's Faith Nation. "So before we borrow more money to be able to spend on what people want, we need to make sure we're covering only the essential needs."
While Republicans and fiscal conservatives can get behind the money going towards targeted COVID relief, like unemployment benefits and funding for vaccine distribution, they're concerned about the "pork" attached to this latest relief package.
"When those real needs drive up the deficit we're going to have to tolerate it, but when we're talking about Democrat pet projects for members of Congress, absolutely should not be part of the conversation," Brandon Arnold, the executive vice president at the National Taxpayers Union, told CBN News.
A Wall Street Journal editorial estimates that only about $825 billion of the new bill relates to COVID relief. It goes on to say, "the rest of the bill, more than $1 trillion, is a combination of bailouts for Democratic constituencies, expansions of progressive programs, pork, and unrelated policy changes."
In February, the Congressional Budget Office projected the 2021 federal budget deficit to be $2.3 trillion, the second-highest in our history. That doesn't even include this new $1.9 trillion relief package.
"When you look at industrialized nations right now, there's only a handful of countries that are in as bad of fiscal shape as we are. When you look at the size of our economy relative to our debt, we're at about 100 percent debt to GDP ratio, that's bad news. That puts us in the same boat as the Greece's, Portugal's, Italy's of the world," Arnold said.
Still, the Biden administration is already laying the groundwork for an additional economic recovery package focused on infrastructure and some are predicting it could cost another two to four trillion dollars.