PHOENIX - Members of Arizona's congressional delegation react Friday to a move by a Kentucky congressman during the stimulus bill vote that sparked outrage.
On Friday, Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) tried to force a roll call vote on the sweeping $2.2 trillion coronavirus aid package that was ultimately signed into law by President Trump.
Rep. Massie was the only member of Congress willing to stall, if not block, the historic legislation.
While his effort failed, Massie’s action forced hundreds of lawmakers to return to the Capitol after a nearly two-week recess — potentially exposing them to the coronavirus and contradicting the wishes of public health experts who have urged Americans to keep a safe social distance from one another to avoid exacerbating the pandemic.
Not even pressure from GOP leaders — and tweets by President Donald Trump calling Massie a “third-rate Grandstander” — were enough to knock the 49-year-old Massie off the mission he has pursued since winning office in 2012: to abide by the Constitution and to not overspend federal dollars.
Massie said his request for a recorded vote was “to make sure our republic doesn’t die by unanimous consent in an empty chamber.″
With Arizona's Congressional delegation, Democratic representative Greg Stanton was on a plane back to D.C. at around midnight.
"It was a last minute decision," said Stanton's wife, Nicole. Rep. Stanton was on his way back to Arizona Friday afternoon.
“Two members have tested positive for the Coronavirus. The bill could have been passed on a voice vote without making people travel, using taxpayer money, and putting people at risk," said Nicole.
Meanwhile, Congresswoman Debbie Lesko (R) was advised not to travel. She was disappointed with how how the vote played out.
"I know Thomas Massie. I think he was doing this on principle. I don’t think he was doing it because of ill will, but I completely disagree with him. I think a lot of us wanted to pass this now because businesses and people need help now," said Rep. Lesko.