As Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell prepares to unveil yet another relief package, President Donald Trump has indicated that he is "ready to sign" another stimulus relief bill. The president, who just last week had called for an end to stimulus relief talks, made those remarks in a tweet shared Thursday morning just after his rally in Iowa.
In the early morning message, which was shared just after midnight, Trump took aim at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who he claimed "couldn't care less about the American People or the great American Worker," marking the latest finger pointing amid the rush to approve a relief bill before the November election. Urging her to "approve needed STIMULUS now," Trump went on to write that "Republicans are ready to go, I am ready to sign!!!"
Nancy Pelosi couldn’t care less about the American People or the great American Worker. She should approve needed STIMULUS now. Most other Dems agree. Republicans are ready to go, I am ready to sign!!!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 15, 2020
Although the March-approved CARES Act had quickly been signed into law and had received bipartisan support, additional efforts to pass stimulus relief have all but been thwarted. In May, Pelosi, with the backing of her Democratic colleagues, had introduced the HEROES Act. With a price tag that surpassed $3 trillion, that bill had included, among other things, state and local aid, an extension of enhanced unemployment benefits, and a second round of stimulus checks. Although it passed in a House vote, it was never brought to the Senate floor for a vote, and no further widespread relief efforts were made until July, when the GOP introduced the $1 trillion HEALS Act, which also included an additional round of direct payments. Much like the HEROES Act before it, the HEALS Act did not fare well, and negotiations between Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows quickly became deadlocked.
Although those relief talks have resumed to some degree, a number of other proposals have also been introduced, all meeting the same fate. Republicans, believing a package should not surpass $1 trillion, have introduced two slimmer packages. Democrats, meanwhile, have also introduced what has been dubbed the HEROES Act 2.0. That proposal boasted a price tag of $2.2 trillion and was counter offered by Mnuchin upping the White House offer to $1.8 trillion. Pelosi, however, rejected the offer, calling it "grossly inadequate."
Pelosi and Mnuchin are expected to continue relief talks Thursday, a day that is being called one of the final pushes to strike a stimulus deal before the Nov. 3 election. According to The Hill, despite both Pelosi and Mnuchin indicated that some progress has been made, Mnuchin, speaking at a conference Wednesday, cast doubt an agreement will be reached by Election Day, stating, "I'd say at this point getting something done before the election and executing on that would be difficult."