Sen. Ron Johnson blocks attempt to unanimously pass changes to coronavirus small business loan program

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Chairman Ron Johnson (R-WI) speaks at the start of a Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing on the government’s response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak on March 5, 2020 in Washington, DC.

Samuel Corum | Getty Images

Sen. Ron Johnson on Wednesday blocked a Democratic effort to unanimously approve a bill to give small businesses more flexibility in how they spend federal loans given as part of a coronavirus aid program. 

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., tried to push the House-passed legislation through by unanimous consent Wednesday afternoon. Any one senator can stop such a request. Johnson, a Wisconsin Republican, blocked the measure. 

The senator, who wants the small business loan system known as the Paycheck Protection Program to expire in August rather than December, said he was “going to object until we get [changes] hammered out.” Johnson said he still hopes


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