The incumbent administration has called on the US Congress to pass a stripped-down coronavirus relief bill using leftover funds from an expired small business loan program as the talks on the broader stimulus package ran into problems.
Sunday’s announcement from the White House was the latest development in the beleaguered talks aimed to agree on a stimulus package for the coronavirus hit economy that has left millions of Americans into unemployment.
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In a bid to reach an agreement over a comprehensive stimulus package, the Secretary of Treasury, Steve Mnuchin, and Mark Meadows said in a letter to the lawmakers that they would continue talks with the Democratic speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Senate Democratic leader, Chuck Schumer.
But they urged the Congress to immediately vote on the legislation to use the $130 billion of the unused Payment Protection Program funds. They further wrote in the letter, “the all or nothing approach is an unacceptable response to the American people.”
However, there was no immediate response from Nancy Pelosi, the opposition’s lead negotiator for the stimulus package. Meanwhile, Brian Morgenstern, the spokesperson for the White House, said while talking to the news reporters that the funds will be used to reopen the Payment Protection Program that expired earlier this year. These funds would allow the companies to use it and keep their employees employed.
Furthermore, on Friday, during the talks with Pelosi, President Trump offered a $1.8 trillion coronavirus relief bill. It came after he urged his team to go big and match the $2.2 trillion proposals by Pelosi. Last week, President Trump said in a surprise announcement that he was suspending the talks until the Presidential election.
But Trump’s reversal and his renewed offer have also met some criticism from within the Republican party, politicians who are already worried about the nation’s growing spending and debt. They also fear that a deal would hurt their presence in the upcoming vote.
Besides that, the top Federal Reserve officials have also urged Congress to take extensive steps to support the weakened economy. On Sunday, the head of the Minneapolis Federal Reserve indicated an urgency for another stimulus to support the economy.
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