Coronavirus stimulus: ‘Both sides are serious about finding a compromise,’ Pelosi aide says

Coronavirus stimulus

WASHINGTON (NewsNation Now) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s 48-hour deadline on negotiating a coronavirus stimulus deal with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin appears to be a soft deadline.

Pelosi’s Deputy Chief of Staff Drew Hammill says “The Speaker and Secretary Mnuchin spoke at 3:00 p.m. today for approximately 45 minutes” and that “both sides are serious about finding a compromise.”

Hammill went on to say they’ll resume talks on Wednesday.

“We certainly hope to see progress, the American people deserve it,” White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said.

McEnany said her side is hopeful but criticized Democrats for including measures that would help undocumented people.

“The American people deserve a bill that focuses on the American people,” she said.

If Pelosi and the White House do reach a deal, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said it will get a vote.

“If a presidentially supported bill clears the House, at some point we’ll bring it to the floor, yes,” McConnell said.

But McConnell did not commit to supporting such a bill, noting, “We’d have to see what it was first.”

Any deal near $2 trillion could be a hard sell for Senate Republicans, even if the president supports it.

Meanwhile, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tells NewsNation there’s no cooperation between he and McConnell on stimulus.

“Are you in talks with him at all about negotiations that are happening?” NewsNation’s Washington correspondent Joe Khalil asked the Senate minority leader.

Sen. Schumer: Mr. McConnell has been Doctor No when anyone approaches him, including the administration.
Khalil: So you haven’t spoken to him at all?
Sen. Schumer: He doesn’t speak to many people about these things.

Democrats criticized a separate GOP stimulus bill that Republicans reintroduced this week.

“It’s not a bill about helping people. It’s about leaving people behind,” said Sen. Elizabeth Warren, (D-MA).

Warren argues with no stimulus checks, and too little for child care and unemployment, the Republican bill is inadequate.

Hammill said Tuesday that Pelosi and Mnuchin called for the committee chairs to work to resolve differences about funding levels and language. With that guidance, the two will continue their discussions Wednesday.

Speaker Pelosi Letter to colleagues

Dear Democratic Colleague,

Since Sunday, we have been making some progress in setting forth areas of agreement and disagreement in order to decide how we can reach a compromise. 

Today, Secretary Mnuchin and I spoke at 3:00 pm.  Our conversation provided more clarity and common ground as we move closer to an agreement.  Today’s deadline enabled us to see that decisions could be reached and language could be exchanged, demonstrating that both sides are serious about finding a compromise.

On several open questions, the Secretary and I called for the committee chairs to resolve differences about funding levels and language.  Hopefully, we will receive this guidance soon so that the Secretary and I can continue our discussions tomorrow afternoon upon his return. 

The virus must be crushed so we can open our schools and our economy safely and soon.  Our heroes must be honored, our workers must be protected, and our communities of color must be respected.  All of this is even more imperative with the increase in numbers of infections, deaths, jobs lost, and millions falling into poverty.  How the funding is allocated determines how we save lives, livelihoods and the life of our American Democracy. 

For The People, we will ensure that help is on the way.  I remain hopeful that we can reach an agreement before the election.  It will be safer, bigger, and better, and it will be retroactive.

More updates to follow. 

Thank you for your leadership. 

Stay safe. 

NANCY PELOSI

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