A second stimulus package is on the horizon. About a week after Senate Republicans unveiled their HEALS Act, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle engaged in deliberations on Saturday regarding a new stimulus package to help combat the effects of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. According to USA Today, both Republicans and Democrats agree that progress was made during their recent discussion.
On Saturday, the leading members of both political parties sat down for a meeting to discuss the next stimulus package for Americans. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows all sat down for this meeting. Following their deliberations, Schumer told reporters that he believed that their meeting was a productive one. He said, "We're not close yet, but it was a productive discussion and now each side knows where they're at." Mnuchin also had a favorable opinion about their deliberations. "I guess we would also characterize the discussions as the most productive we've had to date," the Treasury Secretary said. "We went through a long list of policy issues on our side and on their side, as we've suggested in the past, there's clearly a subset of issues where we both agree on very much." Mnuchin went on to share that the four lawmakers agreed on a couple of different issues to address in their next stimulus package, such as ones concerning education and small businesses.
As for Meadows, he said that despite the fact that they all agreed on a couple of different points, they are still not close to finalizing a deal. "I don't want to suggest a deal is imminent because it is not," Meadows, who has been communicating with President Donald Trump throughout these talks, said. "There are still substantial differences, but we did make good progress." Even though their discussions were productive, Republicans and Democrats still disagree on aspects of the stimulus package, including whether they will enact a short-term or long-term solution. Pelosi wants to pass a larger bill for Americans and does not wish to take the "piecemeal" approach that the White House and Republicans want. Mnuchin said that they are aware that Democrats want to pass the entire bill at once, but that, "We've made clear that we're willing to deal with the short-term issues and pass something quickly and come back to the larger issues, so we're at an impasse on that."