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Pelosi, Schumer Argue $908 Billion Relief Bill 'Should Be Used as the Basis' of Negotiations

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) say a $908 billion relief bill put forth by a bipartisan group of lawmakers should be used as the framework for a new relief bill.

“While we made a new offer to Leader McConnell and Leader McCarthy on Monday, in the spirit of compromise we believe the bipartisan framework introduced by Senators yesterday should be used as the basis for immediate bipartisan, bicameral negotiations,” they said in a joint statement Wednesday.

They added, “Of course, we and others will offer improvements, but the need to act is immediate and we believe that with good-faith negotiations we could come to an agreement.”

Funding for state and local governments, unemployment benefits, and small businesses is included in the bill, as IJR previously reported.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) floated a revised coronavirus relief bill Tuesday.

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“Leader McCarthy and I have been in discussions with the secretary of the treasury and the president’s chief of staff to try to ascertain what the president would actually sign into law,” McConnell said during a press briefing Tuesday.

He continued, “I think we have a sense of what that is. I laid that out in the call that we had just a little while ago. We’re going to send that out to all the offices and get some feedback to see how our members react to a proposal that we can say for sure would be signed into law.”

According to a White House official, President Donald Trump would support McConnell’s relief package, as IJR previously reported.

Trump rejected the bipartisan bill.

“The president will sign the McConnell proposal that he put forward yesterday. We look forward to making progress on that,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.

Schumer argued McConnell’s bill would not be successful because of his refusal to negotiate with Democrats.

“The obvious fact of the matter is the biggest impediment to getting an agreement is the Republican leader refusing to negotiate in a bipartisan way,” Schumer said.

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