Top-level negotiations between Congress and the White House are pushing toward resolution on a ballooning $1 trillion-plus economic rescue package, as President Donald Trump urged a deal to steady a nation shuttered by the CCP virus pandemic.
All sides indicated late Saturday that a deal is within reach. At issue is how best to keep paychecks flowing for millions of workers abruptly sidelined by the crisis.
Talks also narrowed on a so-called Marshall Plan for hospitals as well as industry loans to airlines and others all but grounded by the virus outbreak and national shutdown. The post-World War II Marshall Plan helped to rebuild Western Europe.
The Epoch Times refers to the novel coronavirus, which causes the disease COVID-19, as the CCP virus because the Chinese Communist Party’s coverup and mismanagement allowed the virus to spread throughout China and create a global pandemic.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced late Saturday all sides were “very close” to a bipartisan resolution.
McConnell instructed committee chairmen to assemble draft legislation. Officials put the price tag at nearly $1.4 trillion and said that with other measures from the Federal Reserve it could pump $2 trillion into the U.S. economy.
“We are poised to deliver the significant relief that Americans need with the speed that this crisis demands,” McConnell said.
Talks will resume Sunday morning when the top four congressional leaders of both parties are set to confer privately at the Capitol with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in hopes of striking a final accord.
A spokesman for Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said there is “not yet an agreement.” Spokesman Justin Goodman said Democrats look forward to reading the draft and further negotiations.
“Everybody’s working hard and they want to get to a solution that’s the right solution, I think we’re very close,” Trump said at Saturday’s briefing, striking a confident tone about the nation’s ability to defeat the pandemic soon.
On Capitol Hill, the Senate convened the rare weekend session as negotiators raced to complete the package. The Senate’s goal is to hold an initial vote Sunday and win Senate passage on Monday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report