House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell each took a stab at breaking the deadlock over a new stimulus, but it wasn’t clear that either side budged enough to get a deal in the short time Congress has left to act.
Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer — who’ve previously stuck with a $2.4 trillion coronavirus relief package — presented a new proposal to McConnell and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, but refused to publicly release details. Schumer called it “a private proposal to help move the ball forward.”
McConnell, in response, began circulating his own plan to fellow Republicans, saying it had the blessing of President Donald Trump. While he labeled it a new proposal, an outline distributed to GOP senators showed it was largely a revision of an earlier $500 billion plan that had been rejected by Democrats as inadequate.
The emergence of the proposals Tuesday reflected the rising concerns that the economy needs another boost amid evidence that surging Covid-19 cases are undermining the recovery as past fiscal support runs out. President-elect Joe Biden on Tuesday called on Congress to pass a “robust” aid bill while unveiling his economic team, without offering specifics of how big it should be or what measures it ought to contain.
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