There is a game of tug of war being played in the back rooms of Washington, D.C. and the people in the middle, American citizens, are getting squeezed.
House Speaker and Democrat California Rep. Nancy Pelosi and President Donald Trump are fighting over the next stimulus bill and now Pelosi has set a deadline, The Daily Mail reported.
Nancy Pelosi gave the White House a 48-hour deadline to resolve the contentious COVID-19 relief negotiations, which have become increasingly rooted in partisanship.
Discussions over federal aid have pulled Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill into an ongoing, back-and-forth battle over the next deal’s provisions.
But on Saturday evening, the House Speaker’s office revealed that Pelosi had an hour-long conversation with Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin via phone call.
It’s unclear what stands to happen if the deadline, set for Monday, is not met.
“The Speaker and Secretary Mnuchin spoke at 7:40 p.m. by phone tonight for just over an hour,” he Deputy Chief of Staff Drew Hammill said on Twitter.
“While there was some encouraging news on testing, there remains work to do to ensure there is a comprehensive testing plan that includes contact tracing and additional measures to address the virus’ disproportionate impact on communities of color.
“There remains an array of additional differences as we go provision by provision that must be addressed in a comprehensive manner in the next 48 hours. Decisions must be made by the White House in order to demonstrate that the Administration is serious about reaching a bipartisan agreement that provides for Americans with the greatest needs during the pandemic,” he said.
The Speaker and Secretary Mnuchin spoke at 7:40 p.m. by phone tonight for just over an hour. While there was some encouraging news on testing, there remains work to do to ensure there is a comprehensive testing plan that includes contact tracing and additional measures to…(1/3)
— Drew Hammill (@Drew_Hammill) October 18, 2020
House Majority Leader and Republican Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell announced on Twitter on Saturday that the Senate will vote on some relief packages for American families.
“I just announced the Senate will vote next week on hundreds of billions more dollars for relief programs that Democrats do not even oppose. Working families have already waited too long for Speaker Pelosi’s Marie Antoinette act to stop. Let’s make law,” he said.
I just announced the Senate will vote next week on hundreds of billions more dollars for relief programs that Democrats do not even oppose. Working families have already waited too long for Speaker Pelosi’s Marie Antoinette act to stop. Let's make law. pic.twitter.com/iR7OYKuCKw
— Leader McConnell (@senatemajldr) October 17, 2020
Republicans, including Sen. McConnell and President Trump have accused the Speaker of playing political games with the stimulus.
Friday was the one year anniversary of the last time the Speaker and the President talked person to person and Pelosi said that they do not have to speak to each other to get the stimulus done.
“Let me say, without the two of us speaking person-to-person, but, either through the airwaves or through the President’s intermediaries, we were able, in that period of time, to pass a huge omnibus bill to keep government open, working with Secretary Mnuchin then,” she said to Nicole Wallace on MSNBC, Fox News reported.
“So it isn’t as if it has to be person-to-person between the Speaker and the President,” the Speaker said. “It has to be knowledge for knowledge in terms of what we – what our purpose is, what we know about the challenge we face and what the possible solutions are.”
“The last thing it is about is whether the President speaks truth in any meeting in the White House worthy of attending,” she said to Wallace.