A surprise brawl over pandemic relief is set to meet a crucial federal funding deadline next week as Democrats join President Donald Trump in his request for payments of $ 2,000 most Americans and Republicans echo his criticism of government spending.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi plans indoor vote on Monday help in the event of a pandemic which includes the $ 2,000 payments Trump says he wants, replacing the $ 600 in the original law. Republicans on Thursday blocked Majority Leader Steny Hoyer’s attempt to make the change.
“House and Senate Democrats have repeatedly fought for larger checks for the American people, which House and Senate Republicans have repeatedly rejected – first, during our negotiations, when they said they weren’t going to go above $ 600 and now with this tough act on the floor, ”Pelosi said in a statement Thursday.
Stimulus payments standoff comes after months of intense negotiations that ultimately resulted in a compromise to inject $ 900 billion into the US economy – including forgivable loans for small businesses, unemployment benefits additional support for tenants threatened with eviction and funds for the distribution of vaccines. These measures were combined with $ 1.4 trillion in annual government spending, and now the whole package is in limbo.
Trump has not explicitly said he will veto legislation, which Congress has completedProcessingThursday, after passing both chambers on Monday. The White House did not respond to multiple requests for comment. The bill was flown to Florida, where Trump is spending Christmas at his private club in Mar-a-Lago, according to a person familiar with the matter.
If the president does not sign the bill by Monday evening, the government – now operating on temporary funding – would begin a partial shutdown from Tuesday. The House could attempt to pass another interim financing measure on Monday if Trump fails to act.
The president tweeted a video on Tuesday criticizing the $ 2.3 trillion bill. His call for payments of $ 2,000, which most Republicans dismissed as too expensive, surprised GOP lawmakers.
“Republicans in Congress and the White House cannot agree on what they want,” Hoyer told reporters on Capitol Hill Thursday. “The President of the United States, whether in Mar-a-Lago or elsewhere, should surely understand the pain, apprehension and deep anguish that people are feeling this Christmas Eve.
Senator Roy Blunt, a member of the GOP leadership, said there were not enough Republican votes in the Senate to pass the $ 2,000 payments.
“I hope the president will reconsider the matter and come to the conclusion that the best thing to do is sign the bill,” Blunt told reporters.
The House will meet again on Monday to vote on the Cash Act, a bill introduced by Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal to increase stimulus checks to $ 2,000. Democrats will have a conference call ahead of the vote to discuss Congressional pandemic response, according to a person briefed on the plan.
Republicans attempted Thursday to seek unanimous consent on a measure to review taxpayer money spent on foreign aid, but Democrats blocked the move. In his complaint Tuesday about the combined virus aid and congressional government spending bill, Trump criticized federal resources spent on international programs, even though those spending were included in his budget and allocated within the framework. of the bipartite credit process.
Trump’s conflict with Congress escalated further this week with his veto on Wednesday over the National Defense Authorization Act, which was passed by both houses by wide bipartisan margins earlier this month. The House plans to vote to overturn Trump’s veto on Monday, with the Senate following suit on Tuesday. It would be the first time Congress has overturned Trump.
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