White House coronavirus aid offer slammed by Republicans in Pelosi and Senate

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A new proposed White House coronavirus financial assistance bill aimed at boosting the U.S. economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic received bad reviews from both ends of the political spectrum in Washington on Saturday.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Dismissed the Trump administration’s most generous plan to date as “one step forward, two steps back,” while Republicans who control the Senate l ‘have been dismissed as being too expensive and a political loser for the conservatives.

Pelosi said she still hopes progress can be made towards a deal, but it’s clear GOP conservatives don’t want a deal on its terms.The White House had stepped up its offer before US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Pelosi spoke on Friday afternoon. President Donald Trump is eager to strike a deal ahead of the Nov. 3 election, even as his most powerful GOP ally in the Senate has said Congress is unlikely to relieve by then.

“The Covid Relief negotiations are advancing. Go big! Trump said on Twitter Friday.

The new offering totals around $ 1.8 trillion, aides familiar with it said, with a key piece of state and municipal tax relief dropping from $ 250 billion to at least $ 300 billion. The White House said its latest offer was around $ 1.6 trillion. Assistants were not allowed to publicly discuss private negotiations and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Pelosi’s most recent public offering was around $ 2.2 trillion, although that includes a business tax hike that Republicans will not approve of.

In a letter to his colleagues on Saturday, Pelosi said: “This proposal was a step forward, two steps back. When the president talks about wanting a bigger relief program, his proposal seems to mean he wants more money at his discretion to grant or withhold.

She said that while the Trump administration tried to address some of the Democratic concerns, disagreements persisted on many priorities and Democrats were “waiting for wording” on several provisions.

“Despite these unresolved concerns, I remain hopeful that yesterday’s developments will bring us closer to an agreement on a relief plan that addresses the health and economic crisis facing American families,” Pelosi’s letter said.

Mnuchin’s latest offer was also roasted by GOP senators, who took part in a conference call on Saturday morning, according to a Republican familiar with the call who was not authorized to discuss the call publicly and spoke under on condition of anonymity. Many conservatives are skeptical of so much deficit-funded aid in the first place, and the provisions proposed by Pelosi, such as expanding eligibility for the Affordable Care Act, have resulted in a thud.

Pragmatists such as Senator Susan Collins, R-Maine and politically endangered Republicans, including Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, appear ready to “go big” as Trump wishes. But the grassroots Republicans – the senses. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, Rick Scott of Florida and John Barrasso of Wyoming, for example – are adamantly opposed to another relief bill that is so generous.

GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell remains skeptical about the chances of a deal, after telling a Kentucky audience on Friday that he did not see a deal come together until election day.

“I think it’s unlikely in the next three weeks,” McConnell said Friday. He later declared that “the first priority of the Senate is the Supreme Court”, suggesting that there is no time to deal with both a remedial bill and the appointment to the high court of Justice Amy Coney Barrett ahead of the November 3 election.

President Donald Trump has been ubiquitous on the fiscal stimulus issue, first as one of the forces for a deal, then killing the talks on Tuesday, to revive them by the end of the week.

On Tuesday, he ordered an end to the long weeks of negotiations after learning that few Republicans in Congress would end up voting for a possible Pelosi-Mnuchin deal. Now, after a political beating, Trump is pushing for a deal, motivated by the prospect of sending $ 1,200 in direct payments to voters ahead of the November election.

It is clear from Saturday’s GOP Senate conference call that skepticism or outright opposition has not changed.

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