Schumer Floor Remarks In Advance Of Senate Moment Of Silence To Recognize The 150,000 Americans Who Have Died From COVID-19

July 30, 2020

Washington, D.C.—Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor in advance of the Senate observing a moment of silence to recognize the more than 150,000 Americans who have died from COVID-19. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:

The Senate will soon acknowledge a moment of silence for the 150,000 Americans who have now died from COVID-19, more lives than our country lost in World War I.

This national tragedy is more keenly felt because it has not, and cannot, be properly mourned. One of the most devastating consequences of this disease is that it keeps us apart even in death. There is no final clutching of the hand of a loved one. No funeral to remember them by. Grandchildren wrapped in protective gear wave goodbye from across the hospital room.

150,000 Americans have died. More than any other nation on God’s green earth, more than our allies and more than our adversaries, more than the most populous nations and those with mere fractions of our wealth and power, and more—so many more—than the nation where this virus originated.

We will debate the reasons for this ugly truth. We must, if we are to avoid compounding our errors and heaping sorrow upon sorrow, as the virus continues to rage throughout our country.

But today, we spend a moment to acknowledge how much our country has suffered already. We have lost friends and neighbors, brothers and sisters, fathers and daughters, mothers and sons. A beloved professor at Howard University, a civil rights pioneer, a renowned psychiatrist. A Brooklyn doctor, 62, on the verge of retirement, who, in the early weeks of crisis in New York, worked day shifts at the ICU and night shifts at the Hospital Center across the street before finally succumbing to the disease himself.

We have lost so many, in so short a time.

Unable to grieve them in the manner they deserve, we respect this moment of silence, this moment of sorrow.

So, I ask unanimous consent that there now be a moment of silence to recognize the more than 150,000 American deaths from the novel coronavirus.

Thank you.