McConnell: U.S. Senate 'very close' on coronavirus relief; Democrats disagree

McConnell: U.S. Senate 'very close' on coronavirus relief; Democrats disagree

(The Center Square) – Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Sunday that the Senate will vote Monday on a sweeping coronavirus relief package to help American families and small businesses devastated by the pandemic.

Whie McConnell acknowledged negotiations remain ongoing, the package is expected to cost nearly $2 trillion and will include funding for small businesses, direct deposits to Americans and enhanced unemployment benefits to help boost an economy heading toward a recession.

McConnell said the legislation has bipartisan support.

"We have integrated a number of ideas the Democrats have had over the past 48 hours with these working groups you're familiar with," McConnell told reporters Sunday. "I'm confident, given the desire of the country to see an outcome, that we'll get to 'yes.'"

McConnell said the legislation is about direct help to Americans and small businesses, not about politics, and he wouldn't let Democrats sneak unrelated policy measures into it.

“That’s not what this is about," McConnell said. "This is not about unrelated policy changes, this is about direct assistance to the American people and to small businesses and to hospitals and others who are in need because we in government at all levels, in order to deal with this pandemic, have basically shut the economy down.”

"I'm hopeful and optimistic we'll get bipartisan support because this bill has been negotiated on a bispartisan basis here in the Senate," he added.

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts later said the Republican measure lacked restrictions, particularly for the $500 billion meant for small businesses.

"This is not a bipartisan proposal," Warren said. "This is a Republican proposal."

McConnell said it would be "best for the country" if the House would take it up after it passes in the Senate. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and majority Democrats have been crafting their own relief package.

* This article was originally published here


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