Apr 23, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Hogan dismisses McConnell's "blue state bailout" claim as "complete nonsense"

Larry Hogan.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) responded to language from the office of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) that suggested federal relief for state governments would amount to a "blue state bailout," calling it "complete nonsense" in an interview with Politico Playbook.

Why it matters: Hogan, a Republican and the chairman of the National Governors' Association, has been among the loudest voices sounding the alarm over the massive state revenue shortfalls caused by the coronavirus. He predicted Maryland would have $2.8 billion budget deficit by July 1.

What he's saying: "That's complete nonsense," Hogan said about McConnell's comments. "These are well-run states. There are just as many Republicans as Democrats that strongly support this."

  • "I'm hopeful that we're going to be able to — between the administration and the 55 governors in America, including the territories — we're going to convince Sen. McConnell that maybe he shouldn't let all the states go bankrupt."

The big picture: Hogan's comments come as Congress prepares to move on to its phase four coronavirus relief legislation, which Democrats hope will include funding for state and local governments. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday that President Trump has agreed to push for the funding.

  • McConnell, meanwhile, told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt on Wednesday that he didn't want to "just send a blank check down to states and local governments to spend anyway they choose to." He instead suggested allowing them to file for bankruptcy.
  • Cuomo responded by calling McConnell's bankruptcy suggestion "one of the really dumb ideas of all time."

Go deeper: Cuomo tears into McConnell for suggesting states should declare bankruptcy

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