President Donald Trump on Friday agreed to a $1.8 trillion revised coronavirus relief package and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discussed the proposal with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on the phone.
The proposal is still smaller than the $2.2 trillion the Democrats offered last week, which Trump rejected on Tuesday night, before reversing himself on Friday, telling a radio host and tweeting that he and Republicans must “Go Big.”
“Covid Relief Negotiations are moving along. Go Big!,” the president tweeted.
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The new stimulus package is about $200 billion more than the White House’s $1.6 trillion proposal last week, which the Democrats rejected also, sticking to their $2.2 trillion bill.
Pelosi and Mnuchin talked on the phone on Friday for over a half hour, Pelosi spokesperson Drew Hammil said in a tweet.
“The Speaker and Secretary Mnuchin spoke at 1:40 p.m. via phone for just over 30 minutes. Today, the Secretary returned to the table with a proposal that attempted to address some of the concerns Democrats have.
“Of special concern, is the absence of an agreement on a strategic plan to crush the virus. For this and other provisions, we are still awaiting language from the Administration as negotiations on the overall funding amount continue,” Hammil said.
Early on Friday, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said President Trump had approved a new coronavirus relief package, just two days after abruptly calling off negotiations.
The new package will include another round of aid for American workers and businesses still reeling from the pandemic, Kudlow said.
“He would like to do a deal,” Kudlow said during an interview with FOX Business’ Stuart Varney.
Pelosi had rejected piecemeal proposals by the White House this week, and has insisted that the American people and American businesses as well as the healthcare sector needed help to crush the virus and stabilize the economy.
Before Trump’s tweet, and before he told Rush Limbaugh in an interview, “I would like to see a bigger stimulus package frankly than either the Democrats or the Republicans are offering,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said at an event in Kentucky that it was “unlikely” a stimulus deal would occur before the election.
McConnell said at another event it was “unclear” if the Democrats and the Republicans could reach a deal on another stimulus package before the election, saying the first item “of priority in the Senate is the Supreme Court” and confirming judge Amy Coney Barrett.
But what would the new revised bill by the Republicans contain?
It is expected that it will contain the weekly $600 unemployment benefits and another round of $1200 direct payments to Americans still battling the devastating effects of the coronavirus.
It is also expected that there would be funding for the postal service, local governments and money to tackle the coronavirus, including for testing, tracing, treatment and isolating patients.
This article would be updated when the details are made public.