President Donald Trump on Tuesday, April 21, said large businesses and institutions such as Harvard University should return money that they received as part of a CCP Virus (coronavirus) relief package.
“I’m going to request it,” the president told reporters at the White House. “Harvard is going to pay back the money. They shouldn’t be taking it.”
“I’m not going to mention any other names, but when I saw Harvard—they have one of the largest endowments anywhere in the country, maybe in the world. They’re going to pay back the money,” the president added.
Harvard University denied receiving funds intended for small businesses impacted by state shutdowns due to the CCP Virus.
“Like most colleges and universities, Harvard has been allocated funds as part of the CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund,” the university said in a statement. “Harvard has committed that 100% of these emergency higher education funds will be used to provide direct assistance to students facing urgent financial needs due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Prestigious universities including Harvard have been criticized for receiving millions from the $2.2 trillion rescue package signed into law last month despited their mammoth endowments that’s worth billions.
Top private schools like Cornell and Columbia will receive $12.8 million each while Cornell has an endowment of $7.3 billion, New York City-based Columbia has $10.9 billion. Harvard will received $8.6 million while it boasts a $40.9 billion endowment, according to the Daily Mail.
“Dear Harvard: Thank you for my law degree and an excellent legal education. You’re very rich; many people are hurting. Now give the money back,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) blasted the university for taking the money.
Dear Harvard: Thank you for my law degree and an excellent legal education. You’re very rich; many people are hurting. Now give the money back. https://t.co/3EwyEcNgSl
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) April 20, 2020
President Trump later took to Twitter to reiterate his comment, adding that Harvard University’s “endowment system should be looked at!”
Harvard should give back the money now. Their whole “endowment” system should be looked at! https://t.co/LcjOcsnCWT
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 22, 2020
The Senate on Tuesday approved roughly $484 billion relief package that includes an additional $310 billion for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) protecting small businesses.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who chairs the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, said his panel will subpoena uncooperative companies as part of an oversight into the use of the small-business aid program.
“This fall, the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship will conduct aggressive oversight into the use of the PPP. If companies are not forthcoming, the committee will use its subpoena power to compel cooperation,” Rubio said.