A total of almost $700 billion dollars appropriated for the Paycheck Protection Program is still not quite enough to meet the needs of all the nation's small businesses that have been hurt by the ongoing coronavirus closures, Sen. Marco Rubio said Tuesday.
"The demand for PPP loans far exceeds the supply of dollars," the Florida Republican told Fox Business' "Mornings with Maria." "That is a lot of money, but the need is greater, there is no doubt. I want to be clear about that."
The senator referred to the first round of lending through the program as a "Catch 22," because some banks in certain states were able to obtain more loans for businesses than other states were. The loans were being approved on a first-come, first-served basis, and there were some banks that were able to submit applications faster than others. However, with the current round, the money will be paced.
Even so, Monday was a big day for applications, because "Democrats blocked funding an entire week," which created a "huge backlog," said Rubio.
Democrats slowed the process for the extra money for the program because they "view everything as an opportunity to get other things," said Rubio.
"Almost everything they got in the second round, we could have had a week earlier," the senator added. "It is traditional hardball politics."
Meanwhile, there are more than 32,000 cases of coronavirus in Florida, as Gov. Ron DeSantis prepares to reopen the state, and Rubio said that without a vaccine, infections will continue.
"Our job is to ensure the infection rate is slow and doesn't overwhelm hospital systems [and] to accept that we are not going back to the way we were two months ago, the normal we're used to," said Rubio. "We are going to be in this for a while. No one has ever done this before, so this is going to be a hit-and-miss approach many cases there is no outline or guideline for how to do this perfectly."
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