As Portland protestors have taken to the streets for more than three months, and as the nation watches hundreds continuously gather around the country for peaceful protests that many times turn violent, Americans are wondering: do these people have jobs?
And Republican Congressman Jim Banks clearly is thinking the same thing. As the nation has been shutdown since March, the CARES Acts provided a serious cushion in unemployment benefits, among other programs that made sure people could stay on their feet. But while protesting is encouraged in the United States, these protests have often led to the destruction of small businesses, looting, and thousands of dollars in damage. As Mnuchin and Meadows talk with Congressional leaders about a second COVID relief bill, Banks wants to make sure that those who are comings crimes associated with the protests cannot receive federal assistance.
The Successful Peaceful Protest Act would block all assistance from the CARES Act to those arrested for rioting, looting, or other violent acts. In a press release, Banks said, “Antifa thugs are descending on suffering communities, disrupting peaceful protests and leaving violence, looting and vandalism in their wake. They turned Milwaukee, Seattle and Portland into warzones, and now they’re moving the chaos to Kenosha, Wisconsin. Who knows which community is next?”
Banks also connected the shutdown benefits with the rioting, stating, “Due to enhanced federal benefits, taxpayers are giving wages to jobless rioters that are destroying our communities. We need to cut them off from their funding and make them feel the full financial consequences of their actions.”
The bill also will require individuals convicted of a federal offense to pay restitutions to the appropriate federal law enforcement agency.