The reality of a second stimulus check gets closer each day, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell now saying he is "prepared to support" coronavirus relief bill. McConnell's statement comes in the wake of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer saying, "We're making progress," after he and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi held a 90 minute meeting with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows.
"We really went down issue by issue by issue, slogging through them," Schumer continued. "They made some concessions, which we appreciated. We made some concessions, which they appreciated. We're still far away on a lot of the important issues, but we're continuing to go at it." CNBC reported that McConnell later spoke with reporters and offered his stance on the negotiations. "Wherever this thing settles between the president of the United States and his team, that have to sign it into law, and the Democrat not insignificant minority in the Senate and majority in the House, is something I'm prepared to support even if I have some problems with certain parts of it."
Sen. Mitch McConnell: "On the unemployment issue, we all know it needs to be solved. We don’t want the expiration to continue." pic.twitter.com/7Lkic8K7Jg— The Hill (@thehill) August 4, 2020
McConnell has faced a lot of criticizim over the delay on the next stimulum bill, after leading the Senate GOP members in postponing a vote on the HEROES Act that the House passed in May. They eventually wrote their own bill, the HEALS Act, but that brought new criticisms after many noticed that it contained "unrelated tax cut for rich people," according to McConnell himself. In addition to criticism from citizens, McConnell has also taken heat from his fellow lawmakers, such as Pelosi. In a previous tweet, McConnell slammed the Democrats, saying that that they needed "to get serious and come to the table" for stimulus negotiations. Pelosi replied, "I would hope that over 10 weeks of failing to act, Leader McConnell would at least get his facts straight: The House-passed [Heroes Act] extends the enhanced unemployment benefits families are depending on — while his 'proposal' slashes benefits by $400 a week."
The same day that the Senate GOP release the HEALS Act, Pelosi issued an official statement. "Ten weeks ago, Democrats passed The Heroes Act, which contains the solution to defeating the virus and safely reopening the country: supporting our heroes, crushing the virus and putting money in Americans' pockets," Pelosi said. "But for ten weeks, the Senate GOP has said just 'pause.' Once again, they have delayed releasing their plan. Children are hungry, families cannot pay the rent, unemployment is expiring and the Republicans want to pause again and go piecemeal." There is speculation that a deal could be reached by the end of the week.