Stimulus Update: Democrats Don't Want to Vote on Bill Ahead of Election Unless GOP-Led Senate Takes It Up

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin may be one step closer to striking a deal on the next stimulus relief package, but the American people may not want to hold onto hope that the agreed upon bill will be approved by Election Day. As the negotiations continue with less than two weeks left before Americans head to the polls, new reporting suggests that some Democrats do not want a vote to take place before Nov. 3.

According to Politico reporters Jake Sherman and John Bresnahan, a number of Democratic lawmakers are expressing a desire to postpone a vote for one reason. Sherman, in a tweet, revealed that Pelosi's colleagues have told her they do not want a "pre-election vote" on a relief bill "unless the Senate is going to take it up before the election." Instead, they reportedly do not want to return to Capitol Hill unless they have "guarantees" from McConnell that a vote will be held in the Senate before Nov. 3.

As Sherman pointed out, at this time it seems unlikely that the Republican-controlled Senate would take up a vote on Pelosi and Mnuchin's bill before the election. Although Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who has reportedly warned the White House against making a deal before Election Day, has indicated that he would bring the bill to the Senate floor for a vote, he has not said when that vote would take place and has made no indication that he would hold the vote before the election. In fact, CNN recently reported that McConnell expressed concerns with the logistics of a vote with the November election now just two weeks away, stating during a closed-door lunch on Tuesday that "given all the legislative hurdles that need to be overcome, and as Republican senators are eager to the campaign," it would be difficult to get the bill approved so quickly, multiple sources claimed.

Currently, following a failed vote on a $500 billion GOP-introduced relief bill Wednesday, the Senate has shifted focus to the confirmation of President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. The Senate Judiciary Committee voted Thursday to advance her nomination to the full Senate, and senators are expected to convene for a rare weekend session for procedural actions ahead of a final confirmation vote expected Monday. After that, there would be just a week for the Senate, as well as the House of Representatives, to hold a vote on a potential relief package, though it had previously been reported that some senators were wishing to have more time to campaign for reelection.

At this time, it seems unlikely that a bill will be approved by Election Day, something that Pelosi herself has since cast doubt on. She and Mnuchin, as of their Wednesday discussions, were said to be closer to putting "pen to paper" to write the next bill.