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Trump Blasts GOP Congressman Who Attempted To Delay Coronavirus Vote

Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., pictured in December 2019, tried to delay a House vote on the coronavirus rescue package by forcing members to vote on the floor.
J. Scott Applewhite

Updated at 1:39 p.m. ET

Texas Republican Rep. Chip Roy wasn't interested in President Trump's attempt at Twitter-shaming another GOP lawmaker who mounted a failed attempt to drag out a vote on a $2 trillion coronavirus relief bill.

There was bipartisan frustration with Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., ahead of the vote over his threat to upend plans for a speedy voice vote on the bill by demanding an in-person roll call. Leaders ultimately prevailed but not before Massie drew fire from Trump.

The attempt at a voice vote forced more than 200 House members to return to Washington despite travel difficulties and some members being either sick with the coronavirus or in protective quarantine. Trump weighed in on Twitter, calling for Massie to be ousted from the Republican Party over the demand.

Trump and his Twitter feed are widely feared by Republicans. He has been known to tank the political prospects of candidates and rain criticism and attacks on those he calls out on the platform. That didn't stop Roy from telling Trump to stop.

At least one other member, Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., also stepped up to defend Massie — but with a slightly softer tone.

Massie was undeterred. He used an 11-part tweet to explain his complaints against the legislation, including its price tag and and political process used to craft it.

After more than four hours of debate, leaders managed to assemble enough members in the chamber to object to Massie's request and move ahead with the voice vote in order to pass the rescue package.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Kelsey Snell is a Congressional correspondent for NPR. She has covered Congress since 2010 for outlets including The Washington Post, Politico and National Journal. She has covered elections and Congress with a reporting specialty in budget, tax and economic policy. She has a graduate degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. and an undergraduate degree in political science from DePaul University in Chicago.
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