Virus aid talks on brink of collapse, sides ‘very far apart’

Our BILLIONAIRE CONGRESS is at it again.. they don’t even want to give us a Nickel for Covid Treatment Aid!! I shouldn’t say us.. I don’t need it personally.. but YOU ALL should be very concerned!! When people lose everything – and they have nothing else to lose – THAT is when they LOSE IT FOR REAL!! I’m just sayin.. 

By ANDREW TAYLOR Associated Press         AUGUST 7, 2020 — 4:45AM

WASHINGTON — Washington talks on vital COVID-19 rescue money are teetering on the brink of collapse after a marathon meeting in the Capitol generated lots of recriminations but little progress on the top issues confronting negotiators.

“There’s a handful of very big issues that we are still very far apart” on, said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. He talked of impasses on aid to states and local governments and renewing supplemental unemployment benefits in the Thursday night meetings.

Both sides said the future of the talks is uncertain. President Donald Trump is considering executive orders to address evictions and unemployment insurance, but they appear unlikely to have much impact.

A breakdown in the talks would put at risk more than $100 billion to help reopen schools, a fresh round of $1,200 direct payments to most people and hundreds of billions of dollars for state and local governments to help them avoid furloughing workers and cutting services as tax revenues shrivel.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer of New York emerged to give a pessimistic update about the chances for an agreement.

“We’re very far apart. It’s most unfortunate,” Pelosi said.

Both sides have adopted a hard line in the talks, though the Trump team is more open in disclosing a handful of its proposed compromises. Republicans were late to agree to the talks and have become frustrated by the inflexible tactics of Pelosi and Schumer, who have been exuding confidence in a political and legislative landscape that’s tilted in their favor.

The Democratic pair say the federal coronavirus aid package needs to be huge to meet the moment: a surge in cases and deaths, double-digit joblessness and the threat of poverty for millions of the newly unemployed.

“We believe the patient needs a major operation while Republicans want to apply just a Band-Aid,” Schumer said. “We won’t let them just pass the Band-Aid, go home and leave America bleeding.”

Senate Republicans have been split, with roughly half of McConnell’s rank and file opposed to another rescue bill at all. Four prior coronavirus response bills totaling almost $3 trillion have passed on bipartisan votes despite intense wrangling. But Trump and McConnell want a bill and discussed the topic at the White House on Thursday morning.

The White House is also promising that Trump will attempt to use executive orders to address elements of the congressional package involving evictions and jobless benefits. But there’s no evidence that the strategy would have much impact or be anything close to what’s necessary, and Pelosi appeared unimpressed at a morning news conference.

“I don’t think they know what they’re talking about,” Pelosi said dismissively.

Pelosi and Schumer staked out a firm position to extend a lapsed $600-per-week bonus jobless benefit, demanded generous child care assistance and reiterated their demand for food stamps and assistance to renters and homeowners facing eviction or foreclosure.

“Don’t nickel and dime our children,” Pelosi said. “Don’t say, ‘We want to give a tax break to a business lunch and not give more money for children to have food stamps.'”

Pelosi was referring to a GOP proposal to increase the deduction for business meals from 50% to 100%. The idea seems likely to die, along with Trump’s efforts to cut the Social Security payroll tax. But Schumer and Pelosi continue to push to restore a tax break for state and local taxes paid mostly by wealthier people with high incomes and valuable homes.

McConnell, R-Ky., is likely to have to assume a higher profile if the talks are to come to a successful close, but he issued a grim assessment of the situation Thursday, again complaining that Pelosi and Schumer are not negotiating in good faith.

“Day after day, they’ve stonewalled the president’s team. Day by day, they’ve tried to invent new euphemisms to create the illusion of progress,” McConnell said Thursday.

Frustration was palpable among Republican senators shuttling in and out of a GOP lunch session, some of whom say Schumer is intent on using the situation as a hammer against Republicans. Schumer is desperate to win the Senate majority just as Republicans are in trying to hold on in a terrible political year.

“As long as they calculate that they’re better off politically doing nothing, it’s going to be hard for us to move forward,” said Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. “And that’s the calculation they’ve made, it appears.”

McConnell is sending the Senate home rather than forcing impatient senators to bide their time while Democrats play hardball. That suggests a vote won’t come until late next week or even after. Progress has been scant in the talks despite more than a week of negotiation.

White House negotiators made some concessions on jobless benefits and aid to state and local governments in a Tuesday session — and then promptly got scalded by Republicans after details leaked out.

5 comments

  1. You need to look at the bill. Pelosi has put a lot of shit that is bad in her $3 trillion 1800 page bill and yada yada about prior business pork doesn’t make this one right. She and Schumer have refused reasonable helpful compromise… even 1x $600 during negotiations. Look at the bill… she is a lying conniving expletive.. Or maybe she is the millionaire you were thinking of. Read her father’s fbi file and her son sells his name to corporate boards. She refused to impeach Bush and Trump… remember? Finally her hand was forced for very narrow articles.

      • I commented earlier .. I would scan the bill quickly but I cannot read it – not enough bandwidth. I knew it was going to be a HUGE CLUSTERFUCK because it took TOO LONG!! The BILLIONAIRES had to have their Just Desserts!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • I know YOU see it.. this is our UGLY FUCKIN’ PROBLEM. We have a corrupt woman in the most Powerful position in Congress – she OWES EVERYBODY and can’t PAY ANYBODY so she screws the ‘least common denominator’! It is the AmeriKan story.. I left because I am an American NOT an American’t..

      WE CAN’T HAVE A NICKEL WITHOUT FIRST GIVING THE ELITES A FEW TRILLION FIRST!! THAT’S IT! FULL STOP!!!!!!

      I thank my lucky stars I made the decision to set myself up, put my ducks in order, and go when I did.. now I am FREE from all that BS and I can just be an observer of the CATACLYSMIC DISASTER FROM A SAFE DISTANCE. I SAW THIS COMING AT LEAST 20 YEARS AGO – BUT I BELIEVED IT WOULD ACTUALLY HAPPEN ENOUGH TO MAKE PLANS TO GET THE FUCK OUT WHILE I COULD – sometimes for family sake I’m sorry I was Right but I warned them too.. no one was listening!! LAST ONE OUT TURN OFF THE LIGHTS…

    • If you provided the link to the Bill I will actually scan it – no time to read an 1800 page bill right now.. I don’t get paid for this shit and I also have another life to enjoy.. thanks.

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