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Sen. Todd Young says Republican senators found some common ground with Democratic President Joe Biden as the federal government works to pass another coronavirus relief measure.

The Biden administration is pitching a wide-ranging $1.9 trillion plan while Young and nine other GOP senators are proposing a more targeted plan with a $628 billion price tag.

There are key differences between the two approaches, but Young said there is broad agreement on several issues, including the resources needed for vaccine distribution, assistance for businesses and employees hit hard by the pandemic, and reopening schools.

Young, however, took issue with the folding of an increase of the federal minimum wage to $15 into the coronavirus relief bill. He believes that’s an issue that Congress should work on separately.

He also doesn’t support pumping millions of dollars into state and local government that could be used for non-coronavirus relief purposes. Propping up governments that mismanaged their resources, he said, would be unwise.

As for Monday’s meeting, which Young said lasted about two hours, the Indiana senator described the tone as “respectful” and said Biden genuinely listened to the GOP senators’ concerns about the $1.9 trillion relief plan.

Young remarked that Biden pledged to pursue “unity” in his inaugural speech. That said, he was “in a way discouraged” that the administration released its ambitious coronavirus relief plan without consulting Republicans.

Young described the Republican plan as “robust” and “more targeted” than the sweeping proposal from Biden’s administration.

“I think we found some common ground in some areas,” Young said, adding that negotiations were continuing at the staff level.

“I think those negotiations will continue until we arrive at a bipartisan proposal or we agree to disagree and go our separate ways and the president will resort to a more partisan process,” he said.

Young noted that there have been five separate bipartisan measures passed to address the pandemic. While Democrats could pursue their package through the budget reconciliation process—which requires a simple majority vote—he believes bipartisanship is vital.

“In the wake of an inaugural address, when the theme was ‘unity,’ one would hope that we could come together once again on a bipartisan measure to kick off this administration and turn that language of unity into real unified action,” he said.

“I don’t know whether in the end we’ll be able to come to terms on an agreement. I do pledge to work with the Biden administration, just as I did with the Trump administration, whenever I believe it will redound to the benefit of Hoosiers.”

The Biden plan calls for $1,400 direct payments to Americans, while the GOP plan stipulates $1,000 stimulus checks to workers making $40,000 or less or couples making $80,000 or less.

The proposal would begin to phase out the benefit after that, with no payments for those individuals earning more than $50,000, or $100,000 for couples. That is less than the Biden plan, which includes $1,400 checks and phases out at $75,000 with a $115,000 cap ($206,000 for couples).

Young cited a study that said the most recent round of $600 stimulus money resulted in an average of $14 in direct spending for households making $75,000 or more—something he said was “no way to stimulate the economy.”

In addition to coronavirus relief, Young also covered other topics:


Young didn’t reveal whether he would vote to convict former President Donald Trump in this upcoming impeachment trial.

Young called the ability to impeach and convict a former president “questionable” and voted along with 44 other senators who questioned the constitutionality of the impeachment proceedings.

From his constituents, he’s “hearing that President Trump is now a private citizen. There are other avenues for those who want to hold him to certain charges. There are other venues for this.”

Young said the focus needs to be on coronavirus relief and economic recovery—not on convicting a former president. Trump is accused of inciting the deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol.

“Because of the extraordinary time period we’re in, I really don’t want to spend a lot of time on this,” Young said of impeachment.

Marjorie Taylor Green

Young didn’t pull his punches when it came to Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, the Georgia Republican representative who has espoused conspiracy theories and embraced some extremist rhetoric.

“There should be no debate about Marjorie Taylor Greene. She’s nutty. She’s an embarrassment to our party. There is no place for her in the Republican Party,” Young said of Greene.

“Of course, people of her congressional district, it’s their prerogative if they want to abase themselves by voting to elect someone who indulges in anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and all manner of other nonsense. I’ve got no tolerance for people like that.”

Young also said he wished Greene got less airtime because it feeds into a “consumer-based media atmosphere” that “is not instructive and does not particularly make us better citizens.”


“Our immigration system is clearly broken,” Young said.

He doesn’t believe executive orders will solve it, which means working through the problem with legislation in Congress.

Young doesn’t believe immigrants should come into the U.S. in the wake of a pandemic while competing for jobs with Americans. He supports a skills-based immigration reform system.

Will working with Biden administration hurt his reelection chances?

“I really don’t worry,” Young said, adding that he has a lot of “fallback options” if he doesn’t get reelected.

He said he’s not a career politician who’s “wedded” to his position

“Hoosiers will judge me by my results,” he said. “I follow through with my last campaign’s commitments to work with Republicans or Democrats whenever they have good ideas.”

He said he worked with the Trump administration and will continue to do so with the Biden administration

“I’m a proud Republican. I’m a proud conservative,” he said. “But I make no apologies for doing the right thing by Hoosiers if it happens to involve cooperation with Democrats.”