Pelosi says stimulus talks are back, as White House raises offer to $ 1.8 trillion

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Confirmed in a TV interview with MSNBC Friday morning, stimulus talks between Democratic leaders and the White House resumed after President Donald Trump abruptly halted negotiations in a series of tweets on Tuesday afternoon and then turned the tide.

Highlights

Minutes after Pelosi’s televised appearance, President Trump sent a tweet saying, “Covid relief negotiations are moving forward. Go big!”

TBEN congressional correspondent Phil Mattingly tweeted that Trump signed a $ 1.8 trillion offer, $ 200 billion more than the White House’s last $ 1.6 trillion offer, but still below the Democrat’s revised $ 2.2 trillion Heroes Act, which was passed by the House without Republican support on October 1. .

Responding to a question of whether the door was open again on a bigger bill, Pelosi said she and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who is leading the relief negotiations on behalf of the White House, should at again on Friday talk of a new stimulus deal. .

Pelosi reiterated his position that Democrats prioritize putting money in Americans’ pockets (ie federal unemployment supplements and $ 1,200 stimulus checks); “Crush the virus” (a $ 75 billion package for testing, tracing and distributing Covid vaccines); and providing additional assistance to first responders, teachers and frontline workers (which translates into assistance to local and local governments and schools).

The White House is targeting $ 300 billion in public and local funding – an amount still too small for Democrats, tweeted Jake Sherman of Politico.

“I hope we get a deal soon,” Pelosi said, adding she was disheartened by Trump’s back and forth in the days before.

Senior White House officials have would have said they plan to work throughout this weekend and next week to reach a deal.

Crucial quote

“We thought we were on the right track then the President without warning in Congress … even baffling some of his own citizens then [tweeted] saying talks are over, “Pelosi told MSNBC on Friday.” He had a terrible backlash, including on the stock market, which is close to his heart. And so he started to come back little by little, and now [onto] a bigger package, so we’ll see what they have to offer today. “

Key context

Stimulus talks resumed in earnest late last month after a hiatus of several months, and experts (including Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell) have since warned that some sort of general relief was needed for a sustainable economic recovery. Mnuchin told President Pelosi on Thursday that Trump was again interested in agreeing to a full-scale stimulus deal, TBEN reported, citing Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff Drew Hammill. It marked a sharp reversal from a series of tweets President Trump sent out on Tuesday afternoon, when he said: “I have asked my representatives to stop negotiating until the end of the election. , when, immediately after I win, we pass a major stimulus bill that focuses on hard-working Americans and small businesses. Trump later tweeted that he would be interested in doing piecemeal bills, for airline aid and stimulus checks. But during a press briefing Thursday morning, Pelosi said she would not sustain any piecemeal effort without a comprehensive stimulus package.

Chief critic

“The situation is a little murky, and I think the darkness is a result of the proximity of the elections and everyone is sort of trying to lean for political advantage,” the majority leader said Friday morning. in the Senate, Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) native Kentucky. “I’d love to see us get past that like we did in March and April, but I think it’s unlikely in the next three weeks,” added McConnell, whose latest proposal for a “skinny” caucus stimulus contained only $ 300 billion in new spending and failed to overcome a Democratic filibuster.

To monitor

The response from more conservative Senate Republicans, as McConnell was unwilling to put a bill to a Senate vote without the support of a majority of his caucus. In a late Friday morning appearance on MSNBC, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tx.) Reiterated that a deal was unlikely before the election, adding that: “When [Trump] made the announcement, it reflected the reality that Pelosi and Schumer don’t want to negotiate… They’re counting on the media to blame everything on the president. “

Tangent

The Senate is not expected to meet until October 19 after coronavirus cases among Congress Republicans prompted McConnell to announce a two-week delay in resuming ground action. Upon her return, the Senate will have a long way to go, as it also seeks to move forward – and possibly focus on – the confirmation of President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett.

Further reading

Pelosi says there are no stand-alone stimulus bills – including aid to airlines – without a comprehensive deal (TBEN)

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